Putin still sees double standard with West on terrorism
Russian President Vladimir Putin
April 26th, 2013
06:22 PM ET

Putin still sees double standard with West on terrorism

By Jill Dougherty

When I was CNN’s Moscow Bureau Chief I participated in a round-table discussion with Vladimir Putin, then president for the first time, in the Kremlin library. Sitting next to him, just to his right, I could see how even the word “Chechnya” infuriated him. After all, it was Putin who, in 1999, launched the second Chechen War.

Thursday, in his annual national call-in, “Direct Line,” in which he fielded questions from Russians for almost five hours, Vladimir Putin showed that he still has a deep current of anger toward Chechen terrorists, along with a deep grudge toward the West for what he perceives as its double standard on terrorism.

The Russian President got a question during Thursday’s call-in from a viewer described as a Russian now living in the United States, Mikhail Smurygi, who told him, “In the wake of the terrorist attack in Boston, many Americans turned against Russia, as the terrorists were from the Caucasus.”

“The Internet is full of anti-Russian comments,” the viewer added. “Our relationship with the United States is quite strained already and these accusations do not help. How are you going to address this?”

Putin replied that ordinary Americans “do not understand what is happening.”

“I want to appeal to Russian and American citizens, and to all the people who follow these international events, and to say: Russia is itself a victim of international terrorism, one of the earliest victims.”

Then, Putin’s anger flashed: “I have always felt outraged when our Western partners, as well as your colleagues from the Western media, referred to our terrorists who committed brutal, bloody, appalling crimes on the territory of our country, as ‘insurgents.’”

“They were hardly ever referred to as terrorists. They provided assistance to them, information support, financial and political support – sometimes directly and sometimes indirectly, but it always accompanied their activities on the territory of the Russian Federation.”

Then, President Putin said, in effect, “I told you so:”

“…we always said that they (the West) shouldn’t make empty declarations that terrorism is a common threat, but make real efforts and cooperate with each other more closely. But now these two criminals have provided the best possible proof that we were right.”

Putin flatly dismissed the idea that the Tsarnaev brothers, whose family comes from the war-ravaged North Caucasus region of Russia which includes Chechnya, were suffering from the effects of the conflict.

“One can endlessly speculate on the tragedy of the Chechen people during their deportation from Chechnya by the Stalin’s regime. But were Chechens the only victims of repression? The first and the biggest victim was the Russian nation, which suffered the most as a result of repression. This is our common history. You can speculate all you want but does it have to do with the United States? What did they do to deserve this? It's not about nationality or religion, as we have told them a thousand times – what is at issue here is extremism.”

Mr. Putin, who obviously has been following reports on the Boston bombing closely, smacked down members of the U.S. Congress who have proposed treating Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the captured suspect, as an enemy combatant, although he used the phrase “prisoner of war.”

“They (Dzhokhar and his older brother Tamerlan who died in a battle with police) moved to the United States and they were granted American citizenship.

The younger brother was an American citizen. Some people there are saying now–not the US Administration but they are politicians–that the surviving terrorist suspect should be declared a prisoner of war. They have completely lost their marbles. A prisoner of which war? Has the civil war between the North and the South started again? What complete nonsense! They are talking gibberish!”

Vladimir Putin, however, insists he wants more cooperation with the United States on fighting terrorism. ”If we really join efforts,” he said, “we will not have any more such attacks and we will not bear such losses.”

The Russian president later told reporters the security services of Russia and the United States regularly exchange information but the warning the FSB gave to the FBI and the CIA in 2011 was not enough to stop the attack.

“Since the Tsarnayevs did not live in the Russian Federation, they came to Russia from Kyrgyzstan and only appeared here occasionally while residing in the United States, the Russian special services, to my great regret, were not able to provide our American colleagues with information that would have operative significance," Putin said.

soundoff (60 Responses)
  1. Ydrtyk Jdthj

    What becomes of Russia when Putin ages-out?

    April 30, 2013 at 3:24 pm | Reply
  2. Ydrtyk Jdthj

    What becomes of Russian when Putin Ages-out?

    April 30, 2013 at 3:22 pm | Reply
  3. Ydrtyk Jdthj

    Are you saying that Putin is a fool for not bombing his own citizens in the U.S. or only Russia?

    April 30, 2013 at 3:20 pm | Reply
  4. hypatia

    Says the wannabe celebrity who imprisoned a band for calling him a fool!

    April 30, 2013 at 2:45 pm | Reply
  5. Truth Betold

    Increasingly i am finding it pointless to talk. If everyone could standstill take a deep breath, with stilled spirits, and review or have a sober reflection of their own lives, perhaps the world will become a better place. Those of us who can analyse properly might have realised that there a individuals and countries who are making a mess of this world but they want to point the moral direction. Just imagine. Then again there are People who seem to hate self-reflection despite being on a highway destruction, in their ways there is no peace and joy but anarchy and death. The type i'm talking about might see something wrong with this post and start targeting me if they get to know me. Its time some Leaders get to grips with the miserable torments some innocents go through because of pagan leaders who have security, monies and other worldly conviniences but ignore the vulnerable.

    April 30, 2013 at 9:11 am | Reply
  6. wjm

    If anybody knows a double standard its Putin alright, how many years wiLl he control his country illegally. I mean he actually found a man to be his puppet in order to control Russia's political body. I think he may even try and stay another term. Meanwhile he is making his personal friends billionaires, at the expense of Russia's poorest. Yeah Putin knows a thing or two about double standards. Of course the two countries should work together to fight terrorism. As should any and all nations who enjoy peace. I'll never forget Bucky on that aircraft carrier, Mission Accomplished. Is there any other reason that better describes why Bucky was looked upon with derision, he couldn't help himself.

    April 29, 2013 at 8:12 pm | Reply
  7. Tftjyk Dfgjhk

    Putins warning to the U.S. was helpful but not conclusive.

    April 29, 2013 at 7:19 pm | Reply
  8. Tftjyk Dfgjhk

    The first "loser" was not an Actual Citizen of the U.S. he died– the second "loser" was a Citizen & will face "Justice" in a Court of Laws to be Judged by a jury of his piers e.g other U.S.. Citizens.

    April 29, 2013 at 7:16 pm | Reply
  9. Tftjyk Dfgjhk

    Putin should understand that those Boston bombers were free to make the wrong choice. One terrorist paid with his life on the streets of "Boston" if for nothing else he did not listen to then pointed a gun at officers of the peace ect.

    April 29, 2013 at 7:08 pm | Reply
  10. Tftjyk Dfgjhk

    Putin should understand that the U.S. is a Country of laws albiet how those laws apply are "practiced" by the U.S.

    April 29, 2013 at 7:01 pm | Reply
  11. Tftjyk Dfgjhk

    Putin should see that gee-ha-d is a labratory of extreamism but not exclusive too terrorism

    April 29, 2013 at 6:56 pm | Reply
  12. Bayou_Disqus

    Here's what I find interesting about this article. The Russian President was asked about American commentators on the internet who had negative things to say about Russia after the Boston bombings. The question assumes that Americans see Chechen (however you want to spell it) terrorists as Russian terrorists (thus straining our relations), but that assumption is very far from the truth. I far as I can tell, most people I know actually agree with Putin on this one.

    April 29, 2013 at 5:48 pm | Reply
  13. helenecha

    Glad to see that Russian President Putin wants to cooperate with the West. Here are my questions. When the West is trying their efforts to eliminate the risks from the livings based on their needs, can Russia give them a hand? When Russia sees the threats based on its needs, can the West give it a hand?

    April 29, 2013 at 3:37 pm | Reply
  14. Professor

    Putin nails it! He does not even tell the full story. We treated Russia like a defeated empire at the end of the Cold War rather than welcoming the new Russian nation into the family of nations as we should have done. The Russians are our racial, strategic, religious, technological, economic, and political brothers and we have done almost everything possible to destroy these relationships.

    We have fought Chechens in Iraq, Afghanistan, Yemen, Mali- and the streets of Boston. How can we criticize Russia and Putin for "hard line tactics" and THEN criticize them again when it turns out they were not 'hard line' enough! They even warned us about these fools!

    Thank you Putin and thanks to our friends in Russia. You have many more allies in America than you know and we will NOT forget.

    April 29, 2013 at 1:54 pm | Reply
    • George Patton-2

      You're right about Russia being a potential ally of ours but that doesn't give them the right to hold on to Chechnya! The Chechens do deserve their independence just like the Kurds in eastern Turkey do.

      April 29, 2013 at 7:19 pm | Reply
      • P. Platypus

        Don't forget Texas!

        April 30, 2013 at 1:17 pm |
  15. StanCalif

    The real problems between the US and Russia as well as China go much deeper. Russia and China are both empires created by dominating and controlling people of other coutries and cultures. These empires were controlled with very heavy handed rulers who punished disadents severly. We, in the US don't understand this. Both of these Giants maintained peace at home eventually leading to a prosperity they had never known. Today these Giants find it unnecessay to rule as they both have in the past, yet their citizens are not all accepting. Revolts lie just below the surface, and both know it.
    For our short history as a nation which grew into being the "super power" we are today, we never had to deal with these issues. However, this is rapidly changing! We did not conquer and try to rule other people. But, foolishly and through ignorance, have been "importing" our worst enemies in the name of "human rights"! Now we begin to face the consequences, it will only get worse! "Welcome to America!" You are now free to attack us! We don't watch you, we don't care about your beliefs and convictons! This policy worked for over 200 year, it must be right. Surprise! This doesn't work anymore, we can only blame ourselves for being so ignorant and foolish!

    April 28, 2013 at 9:09 am | Reply
    • Joe M.

      That statement you made above that "we did not try to conquer and control other people" is totally false! Look at Iraq and Afghanistan, for instance. Iraq today is no more that a U.S. satellite state and we plan to control Afghanistan well after 2014! Today, the right-wing politicians are talking about jumping into Syria "to help the rebels" to set up another U.S. backed pseudo-democracy! Need I say more?

      April 28, 2013 at 11:45 am | Reply
      • StanCalif

        Where have you been? Today, Iran is Iraq's better "friend" and China is getting Iraq's oil! We screwed up in Iraq, big time!
        Iraq feels NO obligation to the US! Afghanistan is the same!

        April 28, 2013 at 1:31 pm |
      • StanCalif

        Iraq and Afghanistan are no "friends" of the US. The US has very few real friends, even Pakistan is no true friend! Sure, they are "friendly" as long as dollars are rolling in by the ton! We are very big fools on the world stage. We must stay out of Syria! Syria has no future until they both kill each other. We have no idea who these rebels really are anyway. When they finish their business, nothing will be left! Who should pay to rebuild this country, and who should it be rebuilt for? Nobody knows! When everything is destroyed and most of the people are dead, give this land to Israel!!! Then they won't have to steal land anymore. Ha Ha!

        April 28, 2013 at 2:12 pm |
      • rockybruce2013

        Unfortunately we have politicians. People who do not have a real job. People whom are self serving for their own agenda. They are totally focused on on their own political future and only how can they benefit from whatever political situation is currently in the headlines. Putin is clever and Russia is now returning to the old days of dictatorship and civil rights abuse.! Syria is a blood bath.Come on America what the hell are you doing!

        April 29, 2013 at 8:56 am |
      • Jason

        You are so wrong about Iraq and Afghanistan. The U.S. does control either country but does try to exert influence around the world with money . That is common for MANY countries, they all try to influence other countries by force or cash.

        April 29, 2013 at 1:13 pm |
    • Peaceful Pothead

      ur an idiot if u dont think America is an empire as well. We've conquered more countries in the past 20 years then Nazi Germany ever did. We just label it "foreign affairs" or say the country is housing "terrorists" or "WMD's" to justify our actions. You are a fool.

      April 28, 2013 at 3:16 pm | Reply
      • George Patton-2

        Excellent post, Peaceful Pothead. How so very true that rings!!!

        April 29, 2013 at 12:57 pm |
    • NotTheFact

      You don't know what you are talking. US not trying to dominate the world? Then try US have military bases everywhere they can get to?

      April 29, 2013 at 3:08 pm | Reply
  16. saeed

    cant just russia nuke usa and finish the job whats the point of all this pointless talk.

    April 28, 2013 at 9:01 am | Reply
    • Really

      Can't Russia bomb all of the jihadist's such as your self?

      April 29, 2013 at 10:11 pm | Reply
  17. Devil his due

    I guess if we want credibility, we need to give the devil his due- in this case Russia is the devil, but are they? I think as time goes, on whatever adversarial aspect of the US – Russia question, is fading fast into the books of history, and we are realizing we have soo much more in common the we might realize. Not only is it sensible to, understand this- it's critical, in the face of the perils of the changing world we live in. The 2 countries, understand what it is to be a superpower, although the US certainly more of a global one, Russia is as well but within it's own realm, which although is not global is as massive and complex. What US needs to do, and cool it with dquezzing Russia, what Russia needs to do is come clean on they're horrendous past- ackowledge it, and explain how they plan to grow out of it, in a way that gives them the credibility they need worldwide.

    April 27, 2013 at 4:55 pm | Reply
    • Alex279

      Russia does not need to acknowledge or explain anything to US its past. ...as well as present and future. Russia owes NOTHING to the US.

      ...the rest you got more or less correctly.

      April 28, 2013 at 2:15 pm | Reply
  18. Babeouf

    The first poison gas attack using air power was carried out by the British before 1940 somewhere on their Empires periphery(Iraq perhaps) . This was not because the British were somehow peculiarly evil. Just the result of Imperial policies implemented with new technologies. The US is an Imperial power subject to the same Imperial constraints policies and practises embodying new technologies. On the down side and up close the US imperial project isn't edifying but on the upside from a distance you can see its not going to last for much longer.

    April 27, 2013 at 4:35 pm | Reply
    • Joe M.

      One more thing, Babeouf. It was the British who pioneered biological warfare back in 1754 during the French and Indian War(1754-1763) by deliberately infecting blankets with the small pox virus and leaving them where the Indians would get hold of them and wrap themselves therein and become sick. This wiped out much of the Indian population and just about guaranteed the British their ultimate victory in that war. Only a fool would think that the British always played it fair!

      April 27, 2013 at 9:01 pm | Reply
      • smee

        Actually, it began during the Dark Ages, when a fortress would be surrounded and plague infected bodies were catapulted in by the attackers.

        April 28, 2013 at 5:51 am |
  19. George Patton-2

    It appears that Vladimir Putin has it right. There is a terrible double standard in the way we treat terrorism. In fact, we actually sponsored it in countries like Iran and Chile, for instance. Just look at the track records of both the Chilean DINA and the Iranian S.A.V.A.K and the way both practiced state terrorism and both were created by none other than the C.I.A.!!!

    April 27, 2013 at 12:16 pm | Reply
    • Marine5484

      Nicely posted, George. I couldn't have put it better! Thank you.

      April 27, 2013 at 2:14 pm | Reply
    • George Patton-2

      Nice post by me, I couldn't believe I did this too !

      April 28, 2013 at 12:01 pm | Reply
    • Joe

      Now thats an interesting post

      April 29, 2013 at 6:48 pm | Reply
  20. T.

    Who was really behind the Moscow apartments bombing in 1999?

    April 27, 2013 at 8:19 am | Reply
  21. john smith

    America is the root of all terror. America has invaded sixty countries since world war 2.
    In 1953 America overthrow Iran's democratic government Mohammad Mosaddegh and installed a brutal dictator Shah. America helped Shah of Iran to establish secret police and killed thousands of Iranian people.
    During Iran-Iraq war evil America supported Suddam Hossain and killed millions of Iranian people. In 1989, America, is the only country ever, shot down Iran's civilian air plane, killing 290 people.
    In 2003,America invaded Iraq and killed 1,000,000+ innocent Iraqi people and 4,000,000+ Iraqi people were displaced.
    Now America is a failed state with huge debt. Its debt will be 22 trillion by 2015.

    April 27, 2013 at 4:15 am | Reply
    • TopView20

      freak

      April 27, 2013 at 10:25 am | Reply
    • TopView20

      The USA and Russia have a great opportunity to join hands across the hemisphere, and collaborate on a worldwide effort to eliminate Islam. Between these great powers are the Eurpopean nations that are struggling due to the influx of Islamic refugees and the internal destruction of their cultures. Islam has been recognied as a major cancer to world cultures for hundreds of years. It is the openess and goodwill of Westerners that makes our nations vulverable to these infective pathogens. Erradication (with all the violations of "political correctness" acknowledged) is the key to survival. Strong working relationships among the great world powers can bring hope the world.

      April 27, 2013 at 10:37 am | Reply
      • Juliett

        I am so glad to see that I am not the only one that hasn't been brainwashed by the latest trend of Islamic butt kissing. How any intelligent person could be tolerant of a cultist religion who's followers base every waking second on following the teachings of a mass murderer who traveled from place to place raping and murdering everyone they came across not to mention encouraging the practice of pedophilia, slavery of women, and genocide against anyone who disagrees with their so called prophet and his sick teachings. Everywhere these Islamist religious nuts immigrate to, severe social problems erupt, and dangerous radicals are hidden and protected only to pop up and pull off some kind of atrocity. These people are religious fanatics that are no different in their threat to others as the Branch Davidians and other religious cults like them have been in the past. Yet stupid bleeding heart infidels continue to fall for Islam crying about their religious rights and how badly they are being persecuted everywhere they go. Any aggression or prejudice by others against followers of Islam has been brought on by the Islamists themselves and how disrespectful and violent they are not only toward any other faiths they come across, but toward their own women and children. Islam and Hitlers Third Reich have a lot in common should you sit down and really compare the two movements.

        April 27, 2013 at 11:48 am |
      • staunch

        Your comment is assine, the crusaders have been trying to eliminate Islam since their defeat at the hands a Salahuddin. The only cancer to the world is "white domination" and until its full eradication, there will be no peace. Islam is not the problem., American continues to support the global "Wahabbi" movement that sponsors these terrorist. So America is a support of states that sponsor Terrorist. So topview if you would dig a bit deeper, you would see the enemy to the world is American and its "democracy" sheeeeit! Bring democracy to Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, and Qatar. The world take American an her policies for a joke, a failed friggin state.

        April 28, 2013 at 8:21 am |
    • ipeeondeadliberals

      welcome to the FBI watch lists azzhole

      April 27, 2013 at 12:12 pm | Reply
      • Joseph McCarthy

        Hey you above, just because you don't like what somebody posted that's no reason to call him Tea Party names. Judging by the screen name you chose, one would think that you're a Tea Partier!

        April 27, 2013 at 12:29 pm |
    • George Patton-2

      Good posting, john. How so very true that rings!!!

      April 27, 2013 at 12:18 pm | Reply
    • jonny

      Hey john smith same tired old BS again and again you look like more of a fool each time.

      April 27, 2013 at 1:48 pm | Reply
    • Jason

      John Smith your view of America is very skewed. We are mostly the force for good around the world. We have made mistakes sure but have always tried to actually help other countries with totalitarianism.

      April 29, 2013 at 1:19 pm | Reply
      • George Patton-2

        What a dumb comment that is, Jason! Just what's so "good" about invading another country in order to exploit it's natural resources"? Actually Jason, through our foreign policies we did more damage than all the good we claim to have done.

        April 30, 2013 at 5:09 pm |
    • Patrick

      Are you a terrorist or a communist sir? A comment like that belongs in Iran.

      April 29, 2013 at 10:23 pm | Reply
  22. Ronald Grey

    Reblogged this on Ronald Grey and commented:
    We have not yet begun to succeed with America's great patriotic ally, Russia.

    Join me to effect greater safety and happiness through 4% growth in the economy: http://RonaldGrey.com/JoinMe

    April 26, 2013 at 7:55 pm | Reply
  23. BigShiz

    The gangster thinks he's better.

    April 26, 2013 at 6:55 pm | Reply
    • Carlson

      Is he truly any worse than Killer Obama, BigShiz? Somehow I don't think so. It"s Obama who's murdering people in the Middle East with his friggin' drones and nobody's holding him accountable! This is truly sickening!

      April 26, 2013 at 7:11 pm | Reply
      • BigShiz

        Drones can only operate is countries that let them. The problem is the brass after all these years still don't understand you can't win a war with just attrition. You have to have the native population behind you. The refusal to understand other cultures has always been our biggest shortcoming as a nation.

        April 27, 2013 at 2:56 am |
      • George Patton-2

        BigS, drones are meant for mainly backward muslim countries, like Pakistan, Yemen where terrorism is flourishing, and they are all on our payrolls

        April 27, 2013 at 10:11 am |
      • Pete

        @carlson,what about Bushs killing of innocents in Iraq with our military because of Bushs,Cheneys lies,being indicted by over 150 countries but ours for human rights violations..Hundreds of thousands of innocent Iraqis and over 5000 of our military men,women more like murdered because Carlson we should of never been there.Another Vietnam to help keep the republicans MIC going at any expense!!When will you sanctumonious morons just go back and read about your own partys involvement in more illegal acts creating wars and others acts costing lives than most of us can count..You speak of Hillary and Benghazi and 4 deaths when its your own Reagan that had over 300 die while in office with two embassies and a marine barricks attacked and guess what Carlson nothing done to SOS Schultz or Reagan was done was it..Again clean up your own messes before accusing others because with a tainted past as your republican party has they definitly have their work cut out for them don't they!!

        April 27, 2013 at 10:56 am |
      • Carlson

        Pete, you evidently misunderstood me. I have no more use for Bush, Cheney or any other of Bush's henchmen than I do for Barack Obama. All are war criminals who need to be indicted and brought to justice, but due to a lack of moral principles on the part of those judges at the I.C.C. or possibly due to bribery, this will never happen, sadly enough!

        April 27, 2013 at 11:45 am |
      • BigShiz

        Carlson,I agree with you. But you have to understand nothing is going to change as long as Americans are comfortable.

        April 27, 2013 at 1:34 pm |
      • Pete

        @carlson,you can't implicate Pres.Obama as a murderer in the same sense as Bush,Cheney and others because most of these wars were already going when he took office even in Afghanistan..And anybody with any sense would think drones are cheaper than human lives wise than foot soldiers that were killed in droves at the beginning of the Iraq war,remember..I'll take drones taking out their insurgents or innocents because really we shouldn't be over there in the first place right,so blame that maniacal loser in Bush and let him hang with Cheney in the Netherlands Hague just like Hitlers boys did,murderous monsters all!!

        April 27, 2013 at 2:45 pm |
      • Pete

        @carlson,why don't yah think they never got to Hitler,killed in a bunker explosion,good lie and he died in South America ,I'll put money on it as well,probibly Argentina!!

        April 27, 2013 at 2:53 pm |

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