The contrast between the dignity and honesty of the outgoing American President, Barack Obama in his farewell speech, and the narcistic, self-serving nonsense of the President-elect in his press conference was absolutely shocking. At  least it was for me and my generation who were used to respect America in gratitude for what this great country did for us and for Europe - as our liberator in the Second World War, as the leader of the Western world, the guarantor of our freedom and the example for our democracies. All of this appears to be gone. The Americans elected a president unfit for his job, unable to look beyond himself to public duty and the common good and highly vulnerable to blackmail by the Russians. The latter new danger is underlined by the attached article from the Atlantic. Kompromat is an old Russian art, practiced  and refined by the Soviets and highly modernized under Putin. The only reason Putin's Russia wanted Trump to be elected was his vulnerability to blackmail. With such a president, America is in very bad shape as will be the West. Europe is bound to enter a difficult and uncertain era in which its very freedom and unity are at stake.

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