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GB News
GB News
17 Feb 2024

NextImg:Putin was 'toying' with Tucker Carlson in 'theatre' interview, says former US senior defence official

Tucker Carlson's interview with Russian president Vladimir Putin has been slammed as "political theatre" by a former senior defence official.

Peter Zwack, former US Senior Defense Official and Attaché to Russia, has criticised the interview, saying Carlson did not go hard enough on Putin.

It comes after political consultant Alex Deane criticised Tucker Carlson, saying he had become a 'useful idiot' for Putin.

Elsewhere, GB News presenter Nigel Farage blasted the interview, calling it "very, very poor judgment from Tucker."

Carlson interviewing Putin

The interview on X, formerly Twitter, has been viewed over 200 million times


Zwack told GB News: "I think in the end, when you step back from it, it was theatre. But Carlson did not get into any of the human rights issues. Those were fundamental.

"He threw softballs and I think Putin turned it around. He seemingly wasn't at his best but it seemed like he was toying with Carlson a little bit.

"He goes on this diatribe that's almost messianic about Russian history and the Tsar and Catherine the Great and the Soviets and Ukraine has always been a part of Russia and doesn't deserve to be a nation. I mean Jesus Christ.

"That provided a mouthpiece but in many ways, it probably was more damaging to Putin than not and probably damaging to Carlson except for those that already believe in Carlson. I see it as political theatre and it didn't get into the most interesting issues, that I think a good interviewer would have done."

Carlson interviewing Putin

Vladimir Putin speaks during an interview with US television host Tucker Carlson


Reacting to the death of Navalny following Carlson's interview, Nigel told GB News: "Tucker's a friend of mine, but I have to say, not even to ask a question about Navalny was I think the biggest failing of his interview, and I thought that at the time.

"Now it looks like very, very poor judgment from Tucker - that question had to be asked if there are elections coming up in Russia."

Alex Deane told GB News: "He goes over and becomes what can only be called a useful idiot for Putin's regime, and allows him to give this bizarre sprawling interview where when he's asked why did you invade Ukraine, says well let's take us back to the 1300s and the Black Death.

"He goes talks about the gum drop smiles on the streets of Russia and how happy people are in the supermarkets and so forth. And in the very week that pathetic interview drops, Putin's main opposition is murdered in custody."

Putin says he was surprised by a lack of sharp questions from US television host Tucker Carlson in an interview that made headlines around the world last week.

He told a Russian TV interviewer, Pavel Zarubin, that he had wanted Carlson to behave more aggressively, which would have given him the right to reply just as pointedly.

The Russian President said: "To be honest, I thought that he would behave aggressively and ask so-called sharp questions.

"I was not just prepared for this, I wanted it, because it would give me the opportunity to respond in the same way."