Rumours of Russian President, Vladimir Putin granting an interview to former Fox News commentator, Tucker Carlson has been confirmed.
Turker Carlson confirmed that he is in Russia to interview Putin.
“We’re in journalism. Our duty is to inform people” he said in a video posted to X.
Carlson said that the goal of his interview with Putin was to inform Americans about what is happening in Russia’s war on Ukraine.
“Two years into a war that’s reshaping the entire world, most Americans are not informed,” Carlson said.
He added, “They have no real idea what’s happening in this region.”
According to the Kremlin, Putin granted the interview to Carlson because his approach differs from the “one-sided” reporting of many traditional Western news outlets.
Kremlin spokesman, Dmitry Peskov stated that Western media no longer try to appear impartial in their reporting on Russia and said there is no appetite to communicate directly with such media organisations anymore.
“When it comes to the countries of the collective West, the large network media, TV channels [and] large newspapers can in no way boast of even trying to at least look impartial in terms of coverage,” he said.
“These are all media outlets that take an exceptionally one-sided position. Of course, there is no desire to communicate with such media, and it hardly makes sense, and it is unlikely that it will be useful.”Dmitry Peskov
Asked directly why Carlson had landed an interview with Putin, Peskov said the American journalist’s approach was “in no way pro-Russian, it is not pro-Ukrainian – it is pro-American.”
According to a Russian news agency, the interview is likely to be aired on Thursday, February 8, 2024.
It is believed that the Kremlin’s decision to allow the interview demonstrated Putin’s interest in building bridges to the disruptive MAGA element of the Republican Party, and it seemed to reflect the Kremlin’s hope that would return to the presidency and that Republicans would continue to block U.S. military aid to Ukraine.
Pro-Kremlin commentator, Sergei Markov was among the jubilant voices celebrating Carlson’s Putin interview.
However, Konstantin Sonin, a prominent Russian Economist and Putin critic who is now at the University of Chicago, said that it was “amazing” that Carlson would go to Moscow “to find out what is going on,” instead of visiting Ukraine, which faces daily barrages of Russian missiles.
“How would a visit to Moscow, the capital of the aggressor country, 500 miles from the war frontiers … help in figuring out what is going on?” Sonin posted on X.
Others expressed similar dismay.
Prominent Russian journalist, Yevgenia Albats, who is a supporter of imprisoned opposition leader, Alexei Navalny and currently living in the United States, posted on social media, “Unbelievable!”
“I am like hundreds of Russian journalists who have had to go into exile to keep reporting about the Kremlin’s war against Ukraine.
“The alternative was to go to jail. And now this [jerk] is teaching us about good journalism, shooting from the $1000 Ritz suite in Moscow.”Yevgenia Albats
Kremlin Says Special Military Operation’s Goals Remain Unchanged
Moreover, the Kremlin stated that the goals of Russia’s “special military operation” in Ukraine remain unchanged nearly two years after Putin sent tens of thousands of troops to fight there.
Peskov told reporters on a conference call that Russia’s objectives in Ukraine were still relevant, before describing what they were.
“Demilitarisation, denazification, [and] ensuring the safety of people living in those regions that have already become Russian, protecting them from direct attacks and actually saving their lives.
“In addition, in a broader sense, it is to ensure the security of the Russian Federation against the background of attempts to destroy Ukraine’s neutral status, suck it into NATO, and further drag NATO’s military infrastructure closer to our country’s borders.”Dmitry Peskov