The Putin Lecture — COSPOLON

Steven Cleghorn
5 min readFeb 10, 2024

I saw the Tucker Carlson Vladimir Putin interview yesterday. I hope people watch it, not that they’ll learn anything, but at least they will have taken the opportunity to do so.

It wasn’t much of an interview; Tucker may have asked six questions in over two hours and responded to Putin for ten minutes. Tucker didn’t ask any hardball questions (do entertainers ever ask hardball questions?), and it was clear he was out of his depth during Putin’s history lecture that took up over a quarter of the conversation. Had he done broader and in-depth research into the geopolitics of the region and President Putin, he could have abandoned his painful, concentrated gaze, punctuated giggles, and pretentious smirks and gotten into the weeds with his interlocutor.

What Putin had to say did not disappoint. His lecture allows the world to understand that however evil one may think their adversary is, it doesn’t mean they are insane or that their behavior is irrational.

It was clear that Tucker was a bit lost during the history lesson-understanding deep context is hard work, takes time, and requires a rare nuanced understanding of human nature. Towards the end, we seemed to get to the few questions Tucker prepared for.

Unfortunately, few people in the West have bothered to follow the mountains of data, articles, documents, lines of evidence, etc., surrounding problems the West, America in particular, has had with Russia over the past thirty years. People, in general, are not interested. They learn what they know about color revolutions, coups, regime change efforts, and “revolutions” from mainstream media, and MSM is discouraged from sharing most information about events. Those who control propaganda in the West, particularly in America, are masters of the subtle, fine art of deception and manipulation. Anyone who reads books and papers from various organizations worldwide knows this.

Americans primarily want to feel good, even if it’s feeling good about being outraged or feeling bad, even if feeling good with recreational substances ultimately kills them. As the saying goes, “Don’t look up.” The critical mood to maintain is superiority, exceptionalism, and righteousness. Most people are unconcerned about other cultures and foreign ways of thinking about and doing things. To say they are narrow-minded is an understatement; most folks only want to know what they have been trained to want to know. Friends I spoke with at the outbreak of war in Ukraine had not read about events leading up to the war and had no knowledge of the region’s history. What motivated their reaction to Putin’s “special military action” was the feeling that Putin is bad and the West is good.

What will the reaction of the average American viewer be to President Putin’s history lecture? I think I already know. “How dare Putler lecture us! That was his way of distracting us from the truth. (CNN, MSNBC, BBC, FOX) Tucker gave Putler a propaganda platform-the traitor. Make Tucker Julian’s cellmate. Historical and situational awareness doesn’t matter. Putler invaded for no reason other than to concure Europe. It’s his fault. Putler is an existential threat to freedom and democracy and all the Western values we hold dear and The Greatest Generation fought for when they defeated the Nazis single-handedly in World War Two. The West must utterly destroy Russia.”

Never mind that America has always wanted to destroy any country that didn’t like to play ball. War is their racket.

I’m not saying that legitimate threats aren’t there or that the West should be weak; I’m saying the West is weak in more ways than a few.

It’s a truism by now that the US government believes that using force and sanctions are their only forms of diplomacy. I suspect this has something to do with big business, campaign finance, and culture. It doesn’t have anything to do with American security. There are more effective ways to compete geopolitically in the twenty-first century. Mentioning the military-industrial complex is a tired old trope dating back to before the Second World War. If ordinary folks worry about overspending on military contracts, they don’t care about doing anything about it. Americans love having a “strong,” high-tech military even if they lose wars and accomplish nothing by having them. We like to think of ourselves as the toughest badasses on the planet, so we would rather let our nation’s infrastructure grow ragged, our healthcare and education costs skyrocket, and pay higher and higher rents than give up that facade.

Our politicians are careerists, shallow thinkers, more interested in the revolving door with the private sector and financing their campaigns than a geopolitical strategy that has a long-term view with a desired outcome. The only aim for the DNC, the RNC, and politicians is to stay in “power.” They don’t have any ideas anymore.

Western media’s response to this will be painful to audit. I will read a book instead.

It’s mind-boggling to me that our leaders don’t want to understand the thought processes of their opponents. Contrast Putin’s language, logic, and thought processes with the leaders the RNC and DNC are putting up for the presidency: a narcissistic conman (love him or hate him) versus a worn-out, venal politician suffering from cognitive decline, possibly dementia and looking rather frail who will be 83 years old in 2025. You may hate Russia and Putin, but you can’t say that Vladimir isn’t an intelligent statesman who understands power, history, and geopolitics. He’s not shallow, and his mind is as sharp as a steel trap.

What do American leaders want to achieve by wrecking Russia? There are always many actions leading up to the initiation of hostilities between countries. Wars begin before they become kinetic. All Nations have interests. I am still waiting for a clear statement of the US strategy in the region and what they are trying to achieve. We have yet to see an overarching objective because there is none. The whole chaotic business is simply about specific industries that benefit from chaos.

Is American leadership competitive now? Our competitors run circles around Uncle Sam, his Western allies, and the global north. Does Ukraine have enough soldiers to continue fighting for five more years? Is NATO willing to send troops to fight Russian soldiers in Ukraine? Why would they risk a world war? What will that accomplish?

Call me whatever you like, but I am as confused as Putin. Like the President of Russia, I want to see some Western leadership. Wealthy Western states throw money and bombs at conflicts and accomplish nothing but bloodshed. We are facing a global civilization-ending poly crisis that will take herculean coordination efforts around the globe to solve. We need to get our priorities straight.

Tucker Carlson’s interview with President Putin was a huge and historic event that many bright and well-meaning people will analyze. I hope world leaders will learn something, and I hope something positive comes of it. I have my doubts.

Originally published at https://www.cospolon.eu on February 10, 2024.

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Steven Cleghorn

I'm an autodidact, skeptic, raconteur, and a former producer at The Muse Films Ltd. in Hong Kong. I founded Globe Hackers Multimedia Ltd.