A Mural of Trump and Putin Kissing Is Going Viral
A restaurant in Lithuania is garnering international attention for a mural on its wall that depicts Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin kissing.
A local artist painted the provocative mural outside the BBQ restaurant Keule Ruke, which is Lithuanian for "Smoking Pig."
Dominykas Ceckauskas included the phrase "Make Everything Great Again" on the mural, which is located in the capital, Vilnius.
Ceckauskas said that he sees the painting as "an ironic view of what can be expected," saying both men have "huge egos" and seem to get along well.
Ceckauskas said the poster was a nod to a 1979 photograph of Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev kissing East German ally Erich Honecker on the mouth — once a customary greeting between Socialist leaders. The iconic shot was later painted on the Berlin Wall.
There have been no calls to remove the more than 2-meter (6 ½-foot) poster.
Berlin once was the symbol of the Cold War, Ceckauskas noted.
"We think that the border now is not in Berlin, but somewhere here in the Baltic states, between (the) East and the West," he told The Associated Press.
Lithuania — and its Baltic neighbors Estonia and Latvia — regained its independence in the early 1990's after nearly five decades under Soviet occupation and the 1991 Soviet collapse. More than a dozen people were killed and scores were injured in a Soviet crackdown on Lithuania's independence drive in January 1991.
All three Baltic nations have since joined NATO.
In an interview in December, Trump said he was "greatly honored" to have received praise from the Russian leader, lamenting the poor relationship between Putin and President Obama.
"His dislike for President Obama - and it’s a mutual thing - is terrible. That’s why you see all the conflict, all the problems, all the hatred. If we can’t work with Russia, that’s not a good thing," Trump said.
"I’m greatly honored by his statement. I think it's terrific."