Trump Hosts Crew of Russian Spy Ship at Mar a Lago
By Jacob Schmidt
In his continuing tradition of hosting foreign representatives at his Florida golf club, President Trump hosted the entire crew of a Russian spy ship at Mar a Lago this weekend, raising eyebrows among critics and watchdog groups.
The invitation was reportedly extended shortly after Trump’s press conference Thursday, in which he said that he “understood” why Russia had deployed the ship and blamed the media for giving Russia the impression that they could no longer “make a deal” with the current administration. The official announcement of the event came Saturday at a rally in Florida.
“I know the media is going to lie to you about it,” Trump said of the invitation, sneaking in a snipe at the media. “I mean, why wouldn’t I invite them? They’re already right there. Why shouldn’t I invite them to see me? Russia needs to know that we are still willing to strike a deal. We’re going to make the best deal with Russia, a great deal. But first they need to know we’re still willing to be friendly.”
Reports from those in attendance suggest that the event played out similarly to last weekend’s visit with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, where Trump reportedly discussed national security info in full view of the club’s guests. Employees of the club reported that the Russian guests were very excited about the event and were constantly taking pictures.
“They seemed very excited to be there,” a waiter at the club’s restaurant said. “They were taking pictures of the president and his secret service nonstop. I figured they must have been tourists.”
Unlike last week’s Mar a Lago event, there weren’t many social media posts to corroborate what went on there, with the sole photo being shared on the official White House Facebook page, featuring President Trump posing with the captain of the crew and several Secret Service members, one of which appeared to be the man revealed as the holder of the nuclear football last week.
Donald Trump tweeted the following after the event:
“Had a great time with crew of Russian ship last night! Taught them many things about our great country. All very curious about America!”
According to reports, Vice President Mike Pence learned about the extravagant event only after reading this article.