Putin Tells Stone: “Snowden Is Not A Traitor”
Just hours after Megyn Kelly announced on NBC’s Today show that she would be interviewing Vladimir Putin in St Petersburg tomorrow at the International Economic Forum, Showtime released the first trailer and extended clip for The Putin Interviews, a sit-down with the Russian president conducted by the film-maker Oliver Stone for a four-part special that premieres on 12 June.
In the extended clip released on Thursday, The Guardian reports Stone and Putin can be seen driving in a car with an English translator in the backseat, discussing topics such as Edward Snowden’s whistleblowing and Russian intelligence.
“As an ex-KGB agent, you must have hated what Snowden did with every fiber of your being,” Stone asks in the clip.
“Snowden is not a traitor,” Putin replies. “He did not betray the interests of his country. Nor did he transfer any information to any other country which would have been pernicious to his own country or to his own people. The only thing Snowden does, he does publicly.”
Even though Putin condemned the NSA’s spy operation, he told Stone that Snowden shouldn’t have leaked the documents they way he did.
“If he didn’t like anything at his work he should have simply resigned, but he went further,” Putin said in a clip of the interview released Saturday.
Stone, whose 2016 film Snowden detailed the rise and fall of the whistleblower, goes on to ask Putin about his own intelligence activities, and though the clip features no overt references to rumors of Russian meddling in the 2016 US election, Stone can be seen asking Putin about hacking in the special’s official 30-second trailer.
“I think they’re working quite well,” Putin says of Russian intelligence. “Our intelligence services always conform to the law. That’s the first thing. And secondly, trying to spy on our allies if you really consider them allies and not vassals is just indecent. Because it undermines trust. And it means that in the end, it deals damage to your own national security.”
Stone recently took to Facebook to express his views on Trump and Putin. This film comes against a frightening background wherein the US is sleepwalking into a situation where it becomes more and more likely that Russia will react. Which is precisely what so many angry American neocons and Hillary-wing Democrats seem to want! Why? Is it really worth it to push the world closer to the nuclear precipice for this anger? Is it Trump they hate or is it truly the Russians? And why have they conflated these 2 issues?