Certain forces in the United States could have initiated the conflict in Georgia to create an advantage to one of the US presidential candidates. Vladimir Putin voiced this opinion during his recent interview with CNN.
This point of view appeared in Russia soon after Georgia’s aggression in South Ossetia. Prominent Russian politicians said that the conflict had been orchestrated by the USA because Georgia, being a tiny state, would have never invaded South Ossetia without the USA’s permission. The version also said that the war in South Ossetia had been plotted by Vice President Dick Cheney not to let Barack Obama take the White House as a result of the November elections.
“They needed a small victorious war. If it did not work out right, then they can lay the blame on us, make us look like an enemy and unite the country again around certain political forces. Why does this supposition look surprising to you? I am surprised that you are surprised about the things I say. It all lies on the surface,” Putin told the CNN journalist.
Vice speaker of the Russian parliament, Vladimir Zhirinovsky, took up the version too.
“It is all being done for their person - John McCain - to win the elections on November 5. The US defense complex needs to have its own person in the White House – John McCain,” Zhirinovsky said.
“Dick Cheney is the prime enemy of humanity today. Bush is a puppet, just like Saakashvili,” the notorious Russian politician stated.
“US citizens were involved in the conflict. They acted so because they were ordered to act so, and the only person who could give such orders to them is their leader,” Putin said in his interview with CNN.
In the Russian text of Putin’s interview to CNN this idea was formulated as follows:
“We have serious reasons to believe that US citizens were staying in the combat zone. If it is true, if facts are confirmed, it would be very bad. It is very dangerous and this policy is erroneous,” Putin said.
His extensive interview to CNN in the Russian language can be found on the official website of the Russian government.
“Even during the Cold War, during the tough opposition between the Soviet Union and the United states, we always avoided direct clashes between our nationals, not to mention military men,” the prime minister emphasized.
Vladimir Putin expressed his regret about the fact that the United States had not interfered into the conflict between Georgia and South Ossetia and had not stopped the Georgian administration from escalating it.
“I was disappointed because the US administration had done nothing to stop Georgia in the initial stage of the conflict, Interfax quoted Putin as saying.
The Russian prime minister reminded that he was talking to US President Bush on August 8 in Beijing, during the opening of the Olympic Games. The US president said that he would not like a war to happen somewhere.
“At 12 o’clock local time, Georgian troops seized a peacemaking township in the south of Tskhinvali. It is not us to guarantee that we are not going to attack anyone. We have not attacked anyone. We ask for guarantees from others so that no one would ever attack us and kill our citizens,” Putin said.
Washington not only ignored Georgia’s aggression against South Ossetia, but also armed the Georgian army, Putin said.
“Why would anyone conduct long-standing negotiations looking for complicated compromises in ethnic conflicts? It is a lot easier to arm one of the feuding sides and push it towards murdering the people of the other side - done. It seems to be such an easy decision to make. As it turns out in reality, it does not happen so always,” Putin stressed out.
Putin said that it was President Dmitry Medvedev, who ordered the Russian troops to enter Georgia.
“Medvedev was aware of my opinion on the matter. But it was only the President of the Russian Federation, the Supreme Commander-in-Chief, Mr. Medvedev, who could make such a decision,” Putin stated.
Putin also said that Russia is not going to turn a blind eye on the killings of its citizens for the sake of its membership in international organizations.
“Are we supposed to let someone kill us, and they would keep us in, let’s say, the Group of Eight?” he said.
The Russian prime minister pointed out that he could hear the Western media and politicians talking a lot about a threat that was coming from Russia.
“You and me are sitting here and talking in the city of Sochi. US warships with missiles on board have arrived [in the Black Sea] being several hundreds of kilometers away from here. The range of their missiles is exactly several hundreds of kilometers. These are not our warships approaching our shores. These are your warships approaching our shores,” Putin told the CNN journalist.
“We do not want any complications, we do not want to argue with anyone, nor do we want to wage wars against anyone. We want to conduct a normal cooperation and see a respectful attitude to us and our interests,” Putin said.
The Group of Eight is inferior without China and India, Putin said in his extensive interview.
“The Group of Eight is an inferior organization in its current state. Itis impossible to imagine the normal development of the world economy without inviting the People’s Republic of China or India,” the Russian premier said.
Answering the question about a possibility of Russia’s exclusion from the G8 club, Putin called into question the G8’s effective activities without Russia in such fields as the struggle against terrorism, drugs, infectious diseases and the prevention of WMDs proliferation.
“I think that one should not think about it and one should not frighten anyone with it. It is not frightening at all. One should only try to analyze the situation properly, look into the future and establish normal relations treating each other’s interests with respect,” Putin said.
Putin added that Russia still hopes for close cooperation with other states although it should be equitable cooperation.
“We want to live in peace and consent. We want to work normally in all directions – on the international security, disarmament, anti-terrorist and anti-drug struggle, on the Iranian and North Korean nuclear issue, we are ready for all of this,” Putin said.
“But we want this work to be honest, open, based on partnership, not selfishness,” the Russian premier said.
Putin believes that Russia can cease its cooperation with the West on the Iranian nuclear program under certain circumstances.
“If no one wants to talk to us on these issues and if cooperation with Russia is not required at this point – well, they can work there alone for god’s sake,” he said.
Putin was particularly emphatic expressing his opinion about the state-run Western media providing false information about the conflict in South Ossetia.
“As for the perception of the events in South Ossetia by the general public, it largely depends on how politicians can manipulate the media and how they can affect the public opinion in the world. Our US colleagues are definitely a lot better at that than we are,” Putin told CNN.
Putin exemplified his point of view with the interview of the US girl of Ossetian origin, Amanda Kokoyeva, and her aunt on Fox News.
“He [the host] was constantly interrupting her. As soon as he did not like what she was saying, he began to interrupt her, he started to cough and croak. He was ready to poop his pants and do it so expressively to make them break off. Is this the honest and objective presentation of information? Is this what they call information? No, this is not. This is misinformation,” Putin said.