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Controversial Tucker Carlson interview: Putin’s big propaganda show

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Controversial Tucker Carlson interview: Putin’s big propaganda show
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    The EU has criticized the interview by US presenter Tucker Carlson. Putin said that he ruled out attacks on Poland or Latvia – and a defeat against Ukraine.

    Update from February 9th, 11:15 p.m.: The much-criticized Carlson interview has reignited debates surrounding the Berlin Tiergarten murder: Vladimir Putin did not seem to expressly rule out the involvement of the Russian secret service. There is someone who is serving a sentence in a country allied with the USA, he said in the conversation with right-wing moderator Tucker Carlson. “This person, out of patriotic feelings, eliminated a bandit in a European capital,” Putin said. “Whether he did it of his own accord or not is another question,” he added.

    Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov declined on Friday to answer the question of whether the person mentioned by Putin was Vadim Krasikov, who was convicted in 2019 of murdering a Chechen-born Georgian and whether he was an agent of the Russian foreign intelligence service FSB. “I will leave this question unanswered,” Peskov said.

    According to the court, Krasikov shot a Chechen-born Georgian in Berlin’s Kleiner Tiergarten in August 2019 on behalf of the Russian state. In late summer, Russia put a prisoner exchange with the USA on the agenda – in favor of Krasikov.

    Carlson interview with Putin in Poland: “Old delusions”

    Update from February 9th, 6:50 p.m.: Tucker Carlson’s interview with Vladimir Putin is also causing consternation in Poland. Putin’s statement that he has no interest in invading Poland or Latvia has “no credibility at all,” said Deputy Prime Minister Wladyslaw Kosiniak-Kamysz. Polish Parliament Speaker Szymon Holownia called Carlson a “useful idiot.”

    Particular outrage was caused by a passage in which Putin assigned Poland shared responsibility for the invasion of Nazi Germany at the beginning of the Second World War. A spokesman for the Foreign Ministry in Warsaw criticized Putin’s “old delusions.” The Kremlin chief had told Carlson that Poland was “intransigent,” so in 1939 Adolf Hitler “could only begin with Poland to implement his plans.”

    Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) also commented on Carlson’s interview spectacle during his trip to the USA.

    Update from February 9th, 4:40 p.m.: The EU strongly condemned Tucker Carlson’s Putin interview. Putin repeated “well-known lies, distortions and manipulations,” said Nabila Massrali, spokeswoman for EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell, in Brussels. He once again “exhibited great hostility towards the West” and once again made it clear that he had no interest in taking real and meaningful steps towards peace.

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    The US moderator also came up. According to Massrali, this “provided a platform for manipulating and spreading propaganda”.

    The right-wing US talk show host Tucker Carlson (l) conducts an interview with Vladimir Putin. © Tucker Carlson Network/dpa

    Update from February 9th, 3:40 p.m.: Tucker Carlson apparently met with NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden while in Moscow. This is reported by the US news website Traffic lights. He had a strong presence in the Russian media before seeking more privacy in his family life.

    Snowden was initially granted asylum in Russia in 2013 after publishing a series of secret NSA documents. He was then granted permanent residency status in Russia in 2020. That same year, he announced his decision to seek dual citizenship. At the time, he explained on the short message service

    Kremlin satisfied with the interview – “What is most important to us is the reaction of our people”

    Update from February 9th, 1:13 p.m.: The Kremlin has expressed satisfaction with the interview with Russian President Vladimir Putin conducted by right-wing US talk show host Tucker Carlson and its impact in the press. “The most important thing for us is the reaction of our people,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Friday. It is of great value that many people, especially in Russia, can familiarize themselves with the interview. “Putin talks about his worldview and his view of the reasons for the current situation and the prospects of what is happening,” said Peskov.

    Update from February 9th, 4:00 a.m.: Tucker Carlson, a staunchly right-wing US journalist, interviewed Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday (February 6) in Moscow, becoming the first Western media representative to do so since Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine began almost two years ago. The conversation aired on Carlson’s website on Thursday evening (February 8, local time).

    Putin ruled out a Russian attack on Poland or Latvia – and described a defeat in the war against Ukraine as “impossible”. “We have no interest in Poland, Latvia or anywhere else,” Putin said in the interview: “Why should we do that? We simply have no interest in it.” A Russian attack on the countries is “absolutely impossible”.

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    The former Fox News host had previously asked the Russian president whether there could be a scenario in which “they send Russian soldiers to Poland.” Putin replies: “Only in one case: if Poland attacks Russia.”

    Turning to the Ukraine war, Putin said there was talk of “inflicting a strategic defeat on the battlefield” for Russia. “In my opinion, this is impossible by definition,” the president said. “It will never happen.”

    Contradiction with Carlson’s statements

    First report: Moscow – Despite heavy criticism on social media, right-wing US presenter Tucker Carlson interviewed Russian President Vladimir Putin. Even before the interview was published, there was contradiction to Carlson’s statements – even from within the Kremlin.

    As Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has since confirmed, President Vladimir Putin granted US television presenter Tucker Carlson an interview on Tuesday (February 6) – the first by a US journalist since the start of the Ukraine war almost two years ago. Peskov said Putin agreed to the Carlson interview because the former Fox News host’s approach differed from the “one-sided” coverage of the Ukraine conflict by many Western news networks.

    US presenter Tucker Carlson during his stay in Moscow. © IMAGO/Ilya Pitalev

    Russia criticizes US media as “extraordinarily one-sided” – Carlson does not adapt to the narrative

    “When it comes to the countries of the collective West, the major network media, television channels and major newspapers cannot in any way boast of even attempting to be at least impartial in their reporting,” Peskov said on Wednesday (February 7). ) at a press conference. All of these media “take an extraordinarily one-sided position,” so there is “of course no desire to communicate with such media and it hardly makes sense.”

    The Russian state media, which reported extensively on Carlson’s visit, was very impressed. Vladimir Solovyov, one of the country’s best-known TV presenters, said the interview would “break the blockade and the existing narrative” in Western media. Carlson is feared because he does not conform to this narrative.

    Tucker Carlson wants to clarify – against the “ugliest government propaganda” under Joe Biden

    When the plan was announced, the talk show host told a similar story: Most Americans are uninformed because no one tells them the truth and the media is corrupt, Tucker Carlson explained in a statement on the online platform X on Monday (February 5). (formerly: Twitter) distributed video. With the interview, which he will make available free of charge and in full length, he wants to ensure that all Americans can form their own opinion apart from the “ugliest government propaganda” under US President Joe Biden. He is not in Russia because he loves Vladimir Putin, but because he loves the USA.

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    Who is Tucker Carlson?

    Tucker Carlson is an American television host, political commentator, author and journalist. He is known for right-wing and strongly conservative views and has worked in various media formats. For a long time he was the host of “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” a political talk show on the conservative news channel Fox News. In April, Fox News fired Carlson and the executive producer of his evening show without giving any further reason.

    Carlson is considered a leading voice of “white grievance politics” – the negative reaction of some white people to the progress of other ethnic groups in terms of rights and economic opportunities as well as their growing cultural equality and political self-determination. He is known for bringing right-wing extremist ideas into mainstream discourse. He has spread conspiracy theories about a supposed “population exchange,” Covid-19, the attack on the US Capitol and alleged Ukrainian bioweapons. Carlson’s comments — including slurs he said on air between 2006 and 2011 (and which resurfaced in 2019) — have sometimes been described as racist and sexist and led to advertising boycotts of “Tucker Carlson Tonight.”

    He further claimed that Western journalists had spoken to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky many times, but had not bothered to question Putin. “Not a single Western journalist has made an effort to interview the president of the other country involved in the conflict, Vladimir Putin,” Carlson claimed.

    Tucker Carlson rails against the media – even Putin’s spokesman denies it

    This claim was immediately rejected by X; numerous journalists called it a lie. On Wednesday, even Peskov contradicted himself and made it clear that the claim was incorrect: “We receive many requests for an interview with the president,” said Peskov. This also applies to Western TV channels and newspapers.

    There is now a “community note” under Carlson’s X video, an opportunity for users to point out misleading or incorrect information. According to Carlson, the interview with Putin should be published at 6 p.m. US East Coast time – that is, on Friday night German time. (tpn)

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