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West does not need strong Russia, it tries to dismember it or make it weak — Putin

Today’s "hypocritical rhetoric and actions by the so-called collective West" are concealing hostile geopolitical aims, the Russian President pointed out

NOVO-OGARYOVO, March 16. /TASS/. What the West really needs is not a strong and sovereign Russia, but a weak and dependent backyard, Russian President Vladimir Putin said in his opening remarks at a conference on socio-economic support for the country’s regions on Wednesday.

"They do not need a strong and sovereign Russia. They will not forgive us our independent policy or the determination to safeguard our national interests. We remember well enough their support for terrorism, separatism and brigandage in the North Caucasus. Just as it was the case in the 1990s and the early 2000s, they are trying to do away with us, to drive into the position of a backyard, to turn us into a weak and dependent country and upset its territorial integrity or, if possible, to dismember Russia," Putin said.

"They failed then and they will fail again," he promised, adding that today’s "hypocritical rhetoric and actions by the so-called collective West" were concealing hostile geopolitical aims.

Putin warned that the West would be relying heavily on what he described as the "fifth column," traitors of national interests, those who make money in Russia, but whose "servile mentality in fact exists in the West."

"I am far from criticizing those who may own villas in Miami or in the French Riviera, who cannot do without foie gras or oysters or without so-called gender freedoms. This is not a problem. The problem is many such people are mentally elsewhere, and not here, not with our people, not with Russia," he said.

"In their scheme of things this is an attribute of affiliation with the highest caste," Putin said. "Such people will not hesitate to sell their own mother for permission to take a seat in the antechamber of that highest caste. They wish to look like it and mimic it in very possible way. But they either forget or do not realize at all that the highest caste needs them in the sole capacity of a disposable tool that can be used for causing the maximum harm to our people."