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When It Comes To Putin, Obama’s Photographer Has The Guts To Do What Trump Won’t 

by Liz Dwyer

July 7, 2017

With President Donald Trump set to have his first official sit-down meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the G20 Summit in Hamburg, Germany, on Friday, some people are worried that Trump is entering “the meeting grotesquely unprepared.” While folks speculate about how America’s tweetaholic president will handle the former KGB spy (will they take a selfie together and share it with the MAGA hashtag?), there’s one thing we can probably be sure of: Trump won’t call out Putin for Russia meddling in the 2016 presidential election.

Trump can’t even admit to Americans that the Russians tampered with the election; he’s still saying that it “could be Russia” but it could be other countries too. So it seems we’ll just have to settle for seeing Putin being taken on by none other than former Obama administration photographer Pete Souza.

On Thursday, Souza — who’s becoming known for giving Trump a photographic side-eye — tweeted a telling picture of Barack Obama and Putin. In the image, Obama’s back is to the camera and he towers over Putin who looks up at him with an icy gaze. Souza cleverly captioned the snap with snarky lyrics from “Behind Blue Eyes,” a 1971 classic rock track by The Who. "No one knows what it's like; To be hated; To be fated; To telling only lies," reads the caption.

The image has racked up tens of thousands of likes, which has become typical for Souza’s posts on social media. Last week after Trump’s sexist attack on MSNBC reporter Mika Bryzezinski, the photographer’s knack for contrasting the way Obama respects women with Trump’s behavior went viral. As for this most recent post, one commenter on Souza’s Instagram said, “You are savage. And I love it."

Maybe Trump will see that comment and want to be called “savage” too, and then he’ll decide to rake Putin over the coals for Russia’s actions. After all, Trump reportedly has no agenda for the meeting, so it wouldn’t be too hard for him to decide to surprise America with a newfound get-tough stance. But let’s be real, Trump will probably clap back at Souza on Twitter before that happens. When he does, there’s no doubt Souza has more photos in his arsenal to troll him with.

Main image via Pete Souza 44 Instagram/Wikimedia Commons

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When It Comes To Putin, Obama’s Photographer Has The Guts To Do What Trump Won’t