The first and the last president of the USSR, Mikhail Gorbachev, accused the US administration of outrageous criticism of Russia. Gorbachev urged the White House not to hinder the gradual development of the country. Furthermore, Gorbachev said that the USA had caught a disease “worse than AIDS.”
“You have caught a disease that is worse than AIDS. It is called the complex of the winner,” the ex-president of the USSR said in an interview with ABC television channel.
The former Soviet leader accused the USA of dictating its lifestyle to the rest of the world. “We will be making mistakes, so what ? Do not put any obstacles in our way! Do you really think that you are smarter than we are? You want to organize the US style of democracy in Russia. This will not work,” the former Soviet president said.
At the same time, Mikhail Gorbachev criticized President Putin too. “I told him I did not understand why he had canceled state elections. Vladimir Putin has used and will continue using authoritarian methods of administration, but Russia must become a democratic state,” the former Soviet leader said.
Mikhail Gorbachev said previously in an interview with The Times that he had urged Western countries not to interfere in Russia’s home policies. According to Gorbachev, the Western countries use double standards in their relations with Russia and act quite hypocritical at this point.
Gorbachev, 75, is not going to return to political activity as a party member, but he preserves his influence both in Moscow, where he regularly meets Vladimir Putin, and internationally. The former Soviet leader is especially concerned about the problems of public development and environmental issues. Gorbachev does not think that Russia needs to fully accept the Western program. “Russia is moving in the right direction independently and steadily,” Mikhail Gorbachev said.
As for Putin’s internal political course, the politician who was awarded a Nobel Peace Prize in 1990 said: “I said that before that Putin had made mistakes. However, democratic principles are being realized under specific circumstances in this respect. One should bear in mind Russia’s historical, economic and social situation,” said he.
Gorbachev rejected the concerns of the West connected with Putin’s position to use oil and gas deliveries as a political weapon, especially after the natural gas scandal between Russia and Ukraine.
“I can assure you that it is not happening. I can stake my head on it. Like Europe, Russia is interested in reliable demand and supplies on oil and gas. Russia needs money for reorganization, so where is the source if this funding? These are our energy carriers first and foremost. It seems very strange to me that the West recommends Russia should establish a free market of natural gas, but when we actually start doing it, they set out their concerns over our market prices on gas. We are being equally condemned if we do something or not,” Mikhail Gorbachev said.
Translated by Dmitry Sudakov
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