Putin is frightening

Gregory White from the Wall Street Journal was one of the western journalists invited to dinner with Russian president Vladimir Putin on Friday (dessert: wild-strawberry soup with vanilla ice cream). Putin’s threat to target strategic missiles on European targets understandably received considerable coverage, but I found some of his more offhand remarks more chilling.
From Monday’s Wall Street Journal (subscription probably required):

“I am an absolutely pure democrat. The real tragedy is that I am the only one. Elsewhere in the world there just aren’t any others,” he added sarcastically, cataloging human-rights abuses outside Russia. “Since Mahatma Gandhi died, there’s just nobody left to talk to,” he joked.

2 thoughts on “Putin is frightening

  1. Hughes Views

    I hope Putin is just posturing. One analyst suggests the Russians are, amongst many other worries, terrified of Ukraine falling into the EU as easily as the Eastern European ex Warsaw pact countries have.

    I’ve always been scared of the Russians but that must in part be because of all the propaganda around in the fifties and sixties (read Bill Bryson on the reasons behind schoolkids’ ‘duck and cover’ exercises in the US in the 50s!). The world is full of posturing…

    Still it’s a good thing the Green Party hasn’t got its hands anywhere near the levers of power in Britain. A few days back on his blog the grand sounding “Principal Male Speaker of the Green Party of England and Wales” said we should have broken off diplomatic relations with Russia over their handling of the gay rights march. Clearly a man without the slightest grasp of the subtleties of long-term diplomacy…

  2. okaycuckoo

    Not posturing at all. The balance of power isn’t just shifting in tennis terms. Here’s a good article that covers the realities of the international oil trade and financing:


    The US looks comprehensively screwed, whichever way you look. Europe has the euro and financial centres, but no natural resources except nuclear. And what’s going to happen to Israel when the US withdraws its tentacles?


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