TUCKER Carlson’s bombshell interview with Vladimir Putin is ready to be launched tonight – however who’s the person breaking bread with the tyrant?
In a twisted story, the so-called “King of cable TV” is now being accused of turning into the Kremlin’s PR man as his upcoming interview is slammed as little greater than a censored puff piece.
Carlson, 54, who has lengthy been adored by Russian state media, might be treating the world to what he claims to be an “unedited” two-hour interview with the Russian president at 11pm GMT.
It is going to broadcast this night on his X/Twitter – a platform that Russians can barely entry because it was banned quickly after the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February, 2022.
It’s the first time Putin has been interviewed by a Western journalist since earlier than the struggle.
Moscow stated it granted the interview as a result of Carlson was by no means pro-Russian or pro-Ukrainian, marking him as totally different from the remainder of the “one-sided” Western media.
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Saying the interview on Tuesday in a video entitled; “Why I’m interviewing Vladimir Putin”, Carlson stated he was merely doing his “job” as a journalist.
He bought it as a method for the American public to see the “fact” of the Ukraine struggle after two years of what he blasted as “lies” fed by Western media.
“You’ve by no means heard his voice. That’s fallacious,” he introduced within the video recorded from Moscow.
However the distinguished pundit is dealing with a media storm accusing him of appearing as a propaganda software for the dictator, who he has ceaselessly defended.
Dr James Rodgers, the previous BBC Moscow correspondent, informed The Solar he fears Carlson will merely find yourself as “mouthpiece” for the Kremlin.
Regardless of Carlson’s claims of attending to the “fact” of what is occurring within the Ukraine struggle, Rodgers expects will probably be a extremely censored rendition of “Putin’s facet – and that is probably not the reality in any respect”.
Carlson, he stated, ought to be apprehensive about “historical past will decide him”.
The same story is being informed on varied Russian telegram channels who’ve known as the interview with Carlson a significant PR “coup” for Putin.
So how did Carlson get right here?
The US TV host spent a vastly profitable profession rising via the ranks of CNN and NBC to lastly land his personal night present on Fox Information in 2016.
“Tucker Carlson Tonight is the sworn enemy of mendacity, pomposity, smugness and group assume,” the present’s synopsis learn. “We ask the questions that you’d ask – and demand solutions.”
After his departure from the community final 12 months, hypothesis over his future was rife.
There have been rumours of Tucker flagshipping different rival networks, organising his personal TV channel and even makes an attempt by Russian state TV to woo him.
However his sudden tie-in with Elon Musk’s newly acquired Twitter, now X, took many abruptly.
He’s now ten months into operating his personal present on the platform – but it surely’s a far cry from the audiences he as soon as wielded on Fox.
His first video was a weird 10-minute monologue during which he praised Putin and concurrently declared UFOs and extraterrestrial life “really actual”.
And so started Carlson slowly falling down a rabbit gap, the place he peddled conspiracy theories and ceaselessly criticised the US for serving to to arm Ukraine.
Who’s Tucker Carlson?
CONTROVERSIAL TV pundit Tucker Carlson is ready to interview Vladimir Putin tonight. However who’s the person sitting all the way down to face the tyrant?
Carlson, 54, has been married to journalist Susan Andrews for 3 many years, with whom he shares 4 children, Hopie, Buckley, Dorothy, and Lillie.
The conservative broadcaster and shut Trump ally rose via the ranks of TV networks to a prime anchor place on Fox Information.
From his primetime place, he commanded in depth affect over American politics and was as soon as even tipped to be a presidential candidate.
After his departure from Fox, he’s stated to have obtained loads of provides from far and broad, together with from Russian state TV, earlier than he settled on X/Twitter.
Ten months on and he’s operating his personal much less profitable, much less watched and fewer talked about video present on the platform.
His first video on it was a rambling monologue during which he praised Putin and concurrently declared UFOs and extraterrestrial life “really actual”.
In July, Carlson launched a two-and-a-half hour interview with disgraced influencer Andrew Tate, who was charged with rape and human trafficking in June in Romania.
In August, he additionally sat down Hungary’s prime minister, Victor Orbán – a person ceaselessly accused by Western policymakers of pandering to Putin.
The identical month Carlson performed a soft-ball interview with Donald Trump and used the time to push a wild conspiracy principle about an alleged plot to assassinate the previous US president.
Since then, Carlson appeared to sink deeper into his criticism of Ukraine’s battle to defeat Russia – criticising the US sending army help to Ukraine and seemingly defending Putin.
On his high-profile and seemingly lavish journey to Moscow, Carlson has reportedly visited the famed Bolshoi ballet and a string of effective eating places – along with his each transfer extremely publicised in Russia.
Sources contained in the Kremlin have known as it a significant propaganda coup for Putin, reviews the The Moscow Occasions.
One supply informed the unbiased outlet that “everybody within the presidential administration has rolled up their sleeves and is working collectively.”
An unnamed authorities official added: “If the interview additionally comes out, our propaganda will blast Carlson’s phrases criticizing the Democrats, which implies he’ll verify our hawks’ line as much as the tiniest element.”
“The chief [Putin] will win the election with out Tucker’s assist,” the official stated.
“However entry to an American viewers via Carlson in the course of the heated wrestle between Biden and Trump is once more a possibility to exert that proverbial affect on the U.S. election, given Carlson’s big viewers.”
One other supply added: “It’s that type of message, saying, ‘You did not anticipate that? We will try this too. Suck it, Joe!’”.
There are additionally unconfirmed rumours that the Kremlin had a heavy say over the enhancing of the interview and even blocked some questions.
Telegram channel, Common SVR, that claims to have hyperlinks contained in the Kremlin stated the interview turned “out to be horrible”.
Putin – or what the channel alleged was his physique double – “was nervous, stated quite a lot of pointless issues and seemed light and weak.”
“It was determined to movie the interview once more, with out improvisation on either side and as shut as attainable to the accredited textual content,” it stated.
“Now the Russian management is courting Tucker Carlson in each attainable manner and making an attempt to create for itself, so far as attainable, a optimistic picture of ‘noble villains’.”
President Putin has lengthy been admired by sure strains within the US hard-right, together with by Trump, who has a historical past of praising the Kremlin chief, together with calling him a “genius” and extra “credible” than US intelligence.
Slammed by the White Home, slammed by journalists
With the information of the interview’s existence, the White Home blasted Carlson for giving a platform to Putin.
“I don’t assume we’d like one other interview with Vladimir Putin to grasp his brutality,” Nationwide Safety Council spokesman John Kirby stated.
His false claims that no Western journalists had tried to interview Putin sparked fury on-line, notably amid Russia’s sweeping crackdown on media freedoms.
The declare was even rebuffed by Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov who informed reporters on Tuesday: “We obtain many requests for interviews with the president.”
BBC’s Russia editor, Steve Rosenberg, wrote on X/Twitter: “Fascinating to listen to@TuckerCarlson declare that ‘no western journalist has bothered to interview’ Putin for the reason that invasion of Ukraine. We’ve lodged a number of requests with the Kremlin within the final 18 months. All the time a ‘no’ for us.”
Russian journalist Yevgenia Albats slammed the interview as “unbelievable”.
She wrote: “I’m like lots of of Russian journalists who’ve had to enter exile to maintain reporting concerning the Kremlin’s struggle in opposition to Ukraine.
“The choice was to go to jail. And now this SoB is instructing us about good journalism, capturing from the $1,000 Ritz suite in Moscow.”
No less than 1,000 unbiased Russian journalists have fled the nation to flee from Putin’s sweeping censorship legal guidelines that criminalise any vital protection of the struggle.
Wall Road Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich has been wrongly imprisoned for nearly 11 months on trumped-up fees of espionage, whereas different international reporters have been expelled.