Donald Trump’s speech in Poland was designed to set up Islamic extremism as a vast, existential threat to civilization, something that requires the West to demonstrate a “will to survive” as well as a willingness to pay “any cost.” It was also a speech heavily laden with the themes of the party behind Polish President Andrzej Duda, which has emphasized Poland’s struggles to adopt an authoritarian, restrictive rule. The authors of Trump’s prompter-delivered speech made sure to hit notes that bought loud approval from the bused-in audience of Polish nationalists.
The speech also reserved a few sentences in which Trump could shake a gentle finger at Russia. But no one in Moscow seems to have been offended. That’s because, not only did Trump’s speech make it clear that Russia was a sideline compared to the great clash of civilizations that provides justification for fearing immigrants, scorning the media, and generally waving away human