SYDNEY, May 29. /TASS/. American filmmaker Oliver Stone said that he has always held Russian President Vladimir Putin in high esteem and identified with him. Stone, who is in Australia now, told ABC reporters about his work on a film about the Russian president.
"The man speaks articulately about what the Russian interests are in the world. And I would say to you, that they’re not about empire or expansion or aggression or a return to the old days," the film director said. "I think what you see is what you get. And you have to listen. But Americans, and I don’t know about Westerners, but let’s just say Americans are not listening to him. And what worries me is that we’re reaching a dangerous threshold, we’ve probably reached it already, where the Western media has, and the Western politicians have insulted him repeatedly, have said that it’s Putin’s Russia and they keep personalizing it."
Even in the Cold War’s worst periods, the American mass media never said "Stalin’s Russia" or "Khrushchev’s Russia", the film director noted.
"He's not a Communist and he doesn't think like one. He thinks like a person who is educated, who is a lawyer."
"The respect for sovereignty of Russia is crucial. Sovereignty is a big issue with him. That’s not to say that he wants to be the United States or he wants to be dominant. No. He wants the interests of the Russian people to be taken into account," Stone explained.
Answering the question about his personal attitude towards the Russian president, Oliver Stone said, "I liked him, I respected him, let’s put it that way."
Stone also said he was deeply worried about current trajectory of US-Russian relations. "I am very worried about it. I think we are sleep-walking towards a nuclear nightmare. If you look back in time, World War I, World War II, you will find they have been strong allies and we can return to that position and have a strong alliance with them which is what we need now. The world is in a very dangerous position and terrorism is an issue on which we both agree."