President Vladimir Putin said Thursday that the U.S. war in Iraq was a “pointless” battle against the Iraqi people, the latest jab at Washington from the increasingly confrontational Russian leader.President Putin answered questions about Iraq and the Russian economy among others.
Speaking during an annual televised question-and-answer session, Putin was asked by a mechanic from the Siberian city of Novosibirsk for his thoughts on comments made several years ago by former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, who suggested that Siberia had too many natural resources to belong to one country.
“I know that some politicians play with such ideas in their heads. This, in my view, is the sort of political erotica that might satisfy a person but hardly leads to a positive result,” Putin responded.
“The best example of that are the events in Iraq — a small country that can hardly defend itself and which possesses huge oil reserves. And we see what’s going on there. They’ve learned to shoot there but they are not managing to bring order.
“One can wipe off a political map some tyrannical regime … but it’s absolutely pointless to fight with a people,” he said. “Russia, thank God, isn’t Iraq. It has enough strength and power to defend itself and its interests, both on its territory and in other parts of the world.”