‘The Rules Be Damned’: Translating Vladimir Putin on Ukraine
Now more than ever, the world is watching what Vladimir Putin has to say. But his words sometimes have only a casual relationship with reality. The true meaning of the Russian president lies beneath the surface.
So when Putin held his annual call-in show on Thursday — broadcast in Ukraine after armed men took over a television tower there — NBC News asked a Russia expert to interpret what Putin really meant.
Matthew Rojansky, director of the Kennan Institute at the Wilson Center, a nonprofit policy research organization, provided the following “translations.”
On who’s causing trouble in eastern Ukraine
Putin: “It’s all nonsense. There are no kinds of Russian units in eastern Ukraine. No special forces, no instructors. They are all local citizens.”