Mike Wallace Conducts An Insult Interview With Vladimir Putin. Come Back Dan Rather.
On the anniversary of the end of WWII Mike Wallace interviewed President Vladimir Putin in the Kremlin. The interview was conducted in the confrontational style of Mr. Wallace. It was conducted through interpreters so the question and answers were on a broad basis.
Most of the questions were on generalities and the answers were also. Wallace acted if he was interviewing Nikita Khrushchev during the cold war. His questions were asked as if was expecting to get a rise out of Putin. Putin was amused by Wallace’s confrontational manner and pointed out the deficiencies in our own system. When Wallace accused Putin of moving away from democracy by appointing governors rather than allowing them to be elected as they first were after the break up of the Soviet Union, Putin pointed out that the same system existed in India, which is considered to be one of the worlds great democracies. Putin also pointed out that four years ago the U.S. Presidential election was decided by the courts, which is not democratic. He then made the point that the President of Russia is directly elected by the people and not by electors appointed by the states.
Putin also admitted that he is a man of faith and that this was a part of the human experience.
He supported George Bush in Iraq but said it was a grave blunder by the Bush Administration to go to war in Iraq. However he added there are many problems in the world, which the U.S. and Russia face together and he hoped, would work together to resolve.
President Putin came out of the interview as a positive man committed to democracy in Russia as well as freedom of religion.
Come Back Dan Rather.
Dan Rather or Bob Schleifer should have been sent to interview President Putin. Mike Wallace is known for his attack style of interview and Putin was way ahead of him. Someone subtler like Rather, Schleifer or perhaps Charlie Rose should have conducted the interview in a manner reflecting the post cold war spheres of mutual interest shared by the United States and Russia. In the end the interview was non productive and an insult to the American people and the President of Russia. Dan Rather when he was head of CBS News would have conducted a better interview. Apparently although he is still at CBS he is not being used for what he did well.