This is an excellent analysis that can only be devastatingly depressing. I’ve been consistently comin to the same conclusions for the last year. What a lesson in the collapse of the last liberal empire. The inherent contradiction in those terms shows the weakness that has now caused the structural failure of the American experiment. So much for 18th century Enlightenment ideals.
While Trump has clearly been worked for years by Russian intelligence it doesn’t really matter. You are correct, he does not understand what anyone is talking about because none of that is important. If Trump can win that is all that matters. He has done all the things he has been accused of but in his world that is his right. The other world is his to destroy.
I do think he is scared, however. Almost everything he has done has ended up failing and he is frightened of Putin. This simply means he will lash out faster and with greater violence if he can.
We are now, I fear, dependent on our military to refuse to act and/or Putin who has a better understanding of the international order and does know Russia’s limits. The hope in the US military is small as it has been heavily infiltrated by the radical right and evangelicals. Hard to say which of those is worse. There is not much left to count on.