I read the long interview given by President Vladimir Putin of Russia to the German newspaper BILD. My expectations were not great, but I was totally surprised.
I thought it fit to write about this interview which was marked by candour, remarkable accuracy, introspection, good analysis and a global view that you do not get either from the British or the Americans. I think it is important for the world to know how the Russian President thinks and strategizes for an increasingly unstable world, and how he perceives the world and global issues of critical importance for the future.
You can read the interview at multiple sites. Some of these are as follows:
I am impressed with President Putin.
He has the lucidity that one would normally expect from the U.S. President or the U.K. Prime Minister. He does not come through as an ex-KGB agent or a spymaster or as a man with no scruples. He comes through as a strong-willed, clear-minded, leader who pulls no punches and has clear objectives ahead of him. He comes through as a strong driver, a guy who gets things done, a person who will not compromise on his principles or ideology – whether these are right or wrong.
Of course, the Russian President is less constrained than a U.S. President. Russia has a controlled democracy, not of the wild sort which exists in the U.S. What the Russian President determines as necessary for the Russian Federation, he gets from the Russian lawmakers. There is no doubt that he will brook no dissent.
Nevertheless, there are many admirers of President Putin around the world – may be more than who admire President Obama or President-elect Donald Trump or President-elect Hillary Clinton (ouch !). The world would like a balance of power between the superpowers, and though Russia does not wish to be a superpower (as per President Putin in his interview above), it is one…………which other country is in a position to control space exploration, thermonuclear bombs, and missiles which can fly with precision to 10,000 KMs………..Russia matches the U.S. in most military parameters, and that is better for the free world.
I especially liked the arguments that President Putin put forward in the BILD interview for his annexation of Crimea and the issues faced with the separatists by the Ukrainian government. Very persuasive thoughts, I would say.
It is a pity that the U.S. and the U.K. do not consider Russia as a partner in the fight against terrorism. “If you are not with us, you are a foe”……….so says the earlier president Bush Jr. But in the case of Syria, Russia is aligned with the Americans, the British and the French. What is wrong ?
Well, the international geopolitics is an interesting game. Enjoy the show ! In the meanwhile, you will do well to read President Putin’s interview with the BILD newspaper. He did extremely well, in my opinion.
My respect for President Putin has gone up considerably !
16th Jan 2016