The story of the Colorado Fuel and Iron Company in Pueblo, Colorado, is a classic tale of American industry. It was founded in the late 19th century, and its mines, forges and quarries grew into a company of 15,000 people and the largest steel mill in the West. Yet even this behemoth, once part of the Rockefeller empire, could not endure. When the Reagan administration toppled barriers to free trade in the 1980s, CF&I bowed to foreign competition. It declared bankruptcy in 1990, almost a century after its founding, only to reboot as a shadow of its former self, the Rocky Mountain Steel Mill. When President Donald Trump levied tariffs this spring on imported steel and aluminum and then picked a trade war with China, he was hoping to throw a lifeline to iconic American companies like Rocky Mountain. His protectionist policies may help that particular mill, but in today’s economy, in which “local” industries are so often inextricably entangled with global supply chains, Trump’s tariffs and the resulting blowback are already hurting a lot of other Westerners. Theoretically, tariffs help U.S. companies by slapping a tax on imported goods so that they are no longer cheaper than domestic ones. Retailers are then more likely to purchase domestic goods, thereby supporting U.S. manufacturers. Yet this false sense of triumph relies on a simplistic worldview, in which shipping containers full of imported products flood American ports and then return empty to their points of origin. That’s not the case. In fact, goods move back and forth across a complex — sometimes illogical — global web of markets. Perhaps those who miss out on the aid can take some comfort in knowing that there are some winners in this scuffle. One of them is none other than Rocky Mountain Steel, which will benefit from the tariffs slapped on foreign competitors. There’s just one catch: The steel mill today is a wholly owned subsidiary of Evraz — a Russian company. One of its top shareholders is Roman Abramovich, a Russian oligarch who has close ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin — and allegedly gave him a $35 million yacht. Abramovich is also chummy with Trump’s daughter, Ivanka, and son-in-law, Jared Kushner. “America First,” indeed.