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Putin – the Man Behind the Former Iron Curtain

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by Mustang

Tucker Carlson began his interesting interview with President Putin with several questions, among them — Why is Russia fighting a war with Ukraine, and why is no one interested in finding a peaceful solution to this conflict?  On the surface, these questions might be asked by any college sophomore, but they weren’t sophomoric.  Wisely, Carlson asked the questions and allowed Mr. Putin to answer them his way.

Vladimir Putin is a well-educated man who became a leading reform politician during Russia’s Perestroika period.  He was a former intelligence officer within the Committee for State Security (KGB), from which he retired in 1990 and took up work at Leningrad State University.

He later served as an advisor to the mayor of St. Petersburg, Russia, with subsequent advancement to the position of first deputy mayor.  He has served variously as President and Prime Minister of Russia since 1999.  In effect, Putin had a front-row seat to the events that led up to the collapse of the Soviet Union and the creation of the Russian Federation.

Within the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR), the Russian Soviet Federated Socialist Republic (RSFSR) was but one of fifteen socialist republics.  Russians did not always control the USSR.  Khrushchev was Ukrainian; Stalin was from Georgia.  During the Second World War, the United States and USSR were allies.

The United States’ decision to use the atomic bomb to end the war with Japan shocked the world.  Never before had anyone witnessed such power in a single bomb.  It also prompted the beginning of the Cold War (a term invented by English writer George Orwell (Eric Arthur Blair) in his 1945 essay titled “You and the Atomic Bomb.”  After the Moscow Conference in December 1945, the USSR transitioned from ally to enemy.

The first phase of the Cold War began when the United States and its Western European allies sought to strengthen their relationships and used the policy of containment against emerging Soviet influence.

For his part, Soviet leader Joseph Stalin was determined never to allow the invasion of a foreign power again.  After the United States and its allies established NATO, directed against Soviet expansion, Stalin began to assemble a collection of buffer states around the Soviet Union.  Stalin referred to these states as Warsaw Pact Member States.  Winston Churchill called it the Iron Curtain.

For forty-four years, the U.S. and NATO alliance members confronted the USSR and Warsaw Block at every turn.  Both the US and USSR engaged in proxy wars, notably throughout Eastern Europe and the Far East.  Ultimately, however, the communist state proved economically inadequate.

The USSR could not keep pace with the United States industrially or technologically.  Note: I recall speaking with a tourist from Russia, a man claiming to be a retired Russian Army colonel (c. 2008), who told me that after observing the United States in action against Iraq in 2003/2004, he and his contemporaries realized that the USSR could never have won in an all-out war with the United States.  It was an interesting acknowledgment, but one I took with a grain of salt.

The point is that the USSR was moving toward collapse long before 1992.

Two developments dominated the politics in the USSR between 1979 – 1989: the crumbling of economic and political structures and patchwork attempts at reforms to reverse that process.  After the rapid succession of Yuri Andropov and Konstantin Chernenko, Chairman Mikhail Gorbachev implemented perestroika to modernize Soviet communism and make substantial changes in the party’s leadership.  Mr. Gorbachev’s reforms led to unintended consequences.  His policy of glasnost facilitated public access to information that undermined the authority of the communist party.

Glasnost allowed ethnic and nationalist disaffection to reach the public stage, and many constituent republics (particularly the Baltic Republics, Georgian SSR, and Moldavia) sought greater autonomy, which Moscow initially rejected.

This led to the revolution of 1989, and the USSR began losing allies in Eastern Europe.  Suffering from low prices of petroleum and natural gas, the ongoing war in Afghanistan, outdated industry, and pervasive corruption, the USSR’s planned economy became an epic disaster.  Shortages in commodities were prevalent and noted on Western television — although my exchange student from Moscow (1994) told me that neither she nor her family ever experienced such televised shortages.

Meanwhile, tensions between the USSR and RSFSR were personified as a power struggle between USSR Chairman Gorbachev and RSFSR Chairman Boris Yeltsin.  Yeltsin presented a formidable opposition to Gorbachev and ultimately replaced Gorbachev as USSR Chairman and, in 1990, became chairman of the Supreme Soviet.  A month later, Yeltsin produced legislation prioritizing Russian laws over Soviet laws — and withholding two-thirds of the USSR’s budget.  In its first-ever free election, Boris Yeltsin became the President of the Russian SFSR in 1991.

On August 19, 1991, Russian dissidents launched a coup d’état against Gorbachev, but the effort faced overwhelming popular opposition and collapsed in three days.  At this point, the disintegration of the USSR was imminent, and the icing on that cake was Russia’s assumption of authority over all USSR institutions.

At this point, the United States government, faced with the opportunity to end the quest for global communism, showed the world its true colors.  All the language used by U.S. Presidents, from Harry Truman through George H. W. Bush (and beyond), about seeking global peace was pure political rhetoric.

At this stage, the United States had the opportunity to welcome a new country into the world of free nations.  The disintegration of the old USSR was a complex matter, made more so by oligarchs who were intensely trying to obtain control of the entire Soviet military infrastructure — from nuclear delivery systems to the weapons themselves.

Stated hopes and ambitions aside, it wasn’t enough to watch the disintegration of the Soviet Union; the United States then embarked upon a program to stamp as much of it out as possible.  They did this by manipulating weak sisters in Ukraine, a breakaway republic, and offering former soviet republics access to membership in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.  The incentives were both military and economic.

During his interview with Mr. Carlson, President Putin (as did Gorbachev during his address to the American people on January 2, 1986) provided a (somewhat) lengthy overview of Russian history.  He believed that doing so was necessary as an explanation of the importance of Russian sovereignty.  His lecture began around A.D. 900 — about the same time King Alfred the Great tried solidifying his hold over southern and central England.

After that, Mr. Putin began to ask a series of questions about the motives of the United States.  For example, if the United States understood how the Russians felt about sovereign territory, particularly in light of the Mongol invasion (1223 – 1440), struggles involving the Polish-Lithuanian Empire (1547 – 1764), invasion of the German Army (1914 – 1917) (1942 – 1944), a bloody civil war (1917 – 1922), and the Cold War.

Until around twenty years ago, I always viewed the U.S. government as the guys in white hats, the good guys, the people you could trust to do the right thing.  Much of that attitude concerned me not knowing all the facts.

This attitude changed when I observed what the U.S. government was doing to people who value their Bibles and Constitutional Rights to live free from invasive government policies.  If the federal government can treat its citizens like “an enemy,” then let’s look at how it treats competitive nations.  My conclusion is that we never wore white hats.

There are many examples to discuss, and I think President Putin did a fair job bringing them to Mr. Carlson’s attention.  I would be interested to hear Tucker Carlson’s “takeaways.”  Putin did ask how it is possible, of all the countries in the world, for the United States to provide financial support to Ukraine’s neo-Nazis — the valuable idiots under the direct control of Ukraine’s President Zelensky.

It is also a fact, as stated by President Putin that following the 2022 Ukrainian Eastern counteroffensive, Russia renewed calls for peace for the fifth or sixth time, and Ukrainian leaders refused to reopen discussions, claiming that the Russian government was not fully committed to peace.  And why should Zelensky be interested in peace talks with Russia?  The United States has become a cash cow for the Ukrainian comedian … and he must be thinking that life can’t get any better than this.

It should not be lost on anyone that the entire progressive apparatus views with deep disdain anyone associated with Mr. Carlson’s meeting with President Putin.  American media put Hillary Clinton on camera, who announced on at least two occasions that Carlson was no more than a useful idiot.  From a former Secretary of State whose ambition was always imagined to be world peace, Clinton’s performance was dismal.

Moreover, the American media, which has become little more than the propaganda arm of the Progressive (Neo-Marxist) Movement, dismissed Tucker Carlson as a “Gonzo Journalist” and Mr. Putin as a “petty dictator.”  Putin may be a dictator, but there’s nothing petty about the man.  Facts tell us otherwise.

I have to add here that the American left’s efforts to keep this nation in a perpetual state of war leave me nearly speechless.  Do the American people realize that this country has been at war more-or-less constantly since 1940?  Why is that?  It isn’t something we can blame on only one party if anyone thinks of George H. W. Bush and his not-so-bright son as conservative.

Since 1940, this country has given up hundreds of thousands of our precious young people to war — men and women who might have found a cure to cancer, and in the process, the government has squandered trillions of working America’s tax dollars.  To what end?  How is the world in better shape today than it was in 1933?

The interview was a good one; I hope something worthwhile comes from it.  I’m not holding my breath.  Too many people in this country are heavily invested in global war and discontent.
Korean War (1950 – 53)

Vietnam War (1953 – 64, 1965 – 77, 1974 – 75)

Laotian Civil War (1959 – 75)

Permesta Rebellion (1958 – 61) (Indonesia)

Lebanon Crisis (1958)

Bay of Pigs (1961)

Dominican Civil War (1965 – 1966)

Korean DMZ Conflict (1966 – 69)

Cambodian Civil War (1967 – 75)

Lebanon Intervention (1982 – 84)

Invasion of Grenada (1983)

Bombing of Libya (1986)

Tanker War (1987 – 88) (Iran-Iraq War)

Invasion of Panama (1989 – 1990)

Gulf War (1990 – 1991)

Iraqi No-Fly Enforcement (1991 – 2003)

Somali Intervention (1992 – 95)

Bosnia-Croatian War (1992 – 95)

Haitian Intervention (1994 – 95)

Kosovo War (1998 – 99)

Afghan War (2001 – 21)

Yemen Intervention (2002 – Present)

Iraqi War (2003 – 11)

Pakistan Intervention (2004 – 18)

Second Somali Intervention (2007 – Present)

Indian Ocean Intervention (2009 – 16)

Libyan Intervention (2011)

Ugandan Intervention (2011 – 17)

Niger Intervention (2013 – Present)

Iraq Intervention (2014 – 21)

Syrian Intervention (2014 – Present)

Libyan Intervention (2015 – 19)

Houthi Intervention (2023 – Present)

Total estimated costs: $10 Trillion (1950 – Present)
Putin was right … U.S. diplomats are stupid.

Exclusive: Tucker Carlson Interviews Vladimir Putin



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