As Putin warns of deteriorating US-Russia relations, has Trump made the world a more dangerous place?

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Relations with Russia have cooled since Trump bombed Syria (Source: Getty)

Brian Klaas, fellow in comparative politics at the London School of Economics, says Yes.

President Donald Trump is an unqualified, reckless, impulsive commander-in-chief who takes significant advice from his even less qualified daughter and son-in-law.

We now know that his daughter Ivanka, who has more experience designing handbags than dealing with Hizbollah, was a key influence in Trump’s decision to bomb Syria. He is relying on her husband, Jared Kushner, to advise on Islamic State – even though his chief qualification is his marriage.

And despite Trump’s newly tough line being proper, it is also extremely risky, without real experts guiding him. Beyond that, Trump continues to use 140 characters on Twitter to threaten rival nations. Most recently, those threats to nuclear powers China and North Korea prompted the North Korean government to suggest it could attack Seoul or the United States with a nuclear weapon (the latter is less likely, but no less harrowing).

It has not even been 100 days. The world is undoubtedly less safe with Trump guiding the US.

Alex Deane, a Conservative commentator, says No.

Trump the candidate talked “America First” isolationism.

Trump the President walks a more consensual internationalist path, forming new connections with leaders in Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Turkey, leading foreign policy observers to praise the administration – former US ambassador to Syria Ryan Crocker, a Trumpsceptic, told the Today programme yesterday that, in international relations terms, the Trump presidency is “so far, so good”.

Strikes on Syria may be thought symbolic, but the destruction of around 10 per cent of Assad’s air force will have stung him and the planes would presumably otherwise have been flying sorties against civilians, so it’s a symbol worth having (especially if you were one of those who would have been struck).

On the other hand, so far, Trump has avoided the mire of long-term direct intervention in removing a Middle Eastern tyrant. His actions have been proportionate and justified. An important aspect of intellectual honesty is acknowledging that even those you don’t like are capable of acting well.

City A.M.'s opinion pages are a place for thought-provoking views and debate. These views are not necessarily shared by City A.M.

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