Tucker Carlson to interview Russia’s Putin

Tucker Carlson to interview Russia's Putin
Tuker CarlsonReuters

Former Fox News host, Tucker Carlson, says he will “soon” interview Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow.

In a video posted on X, formerly Twitter, Carlson said he wanted to do the interview because “Americans have a right to know all they can about a war they are implicated in”.

It would be Mr Putin’s first one-on-one interview with a Western journalist since he launched his full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.

The Kremlin has not yet commented.

The 54-year-old’s visit to Moscow has been reported on voraciously in Russian state media, with near-constant coverage of his every move.

“There are risks to doing an interview like this, obviously, so we’ve thought about it over many months,” Carlson said on his announcement video.

He went on to say that since the war in Ukraine began, Western media has interviewed Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky – whom he has previously called a “dictator” – many times.

But they are “fawning pep sessions” aimed at amplifying Mr Zelensky’s demand to get the US more and more involved in the war, Carlson insisted.

“That is not journalism – it is government propaganda.”

He went on to say that “not a single Western journalist has bothered to interview” Vladimir Putin.

“We are not here because we love Vladimir Putin, we are here because we love the United States.”

The conservative journalist has been an outspoken defender of Mr Putin.

“Has Putin ever called me a racist? Has he threatened to get me fired for disagreeing with him?” Carlson said as Russian troops started to mass on Ukraine’s border. “These are fair questions, and the answer to all of them is: No. Vladimir Putin didn’t do any of that.”

After Russia had invaded, he changed his tone slightly during a different show, saying “Vladimir Putin started this war… He is to blame for what we’re seeing tonight in Ukraine”.

Exactly when the interview will take place is unclear, but Carlson said it would be uploaded live and unedited to his X account. Elon Musk, who owns the platform, has “promised not to supress or block the interview”.

Tucker Carlson was one of America’s top-rated cable TV hosts – but he abruptly left Fox News last year.

While at the US network, his shows frequently set the agenda for conservatives and, by extension, the Republican party.

He was hugely influential as the anchor of a late night political talk show between 2016 and 2023 and has since launched a show on X.

Source: bbc.co.uk

By David Ryckman