When German journalists asked the very simplistic question on whether Putin considered himself a friend or a foe to the West- he answered neither. There is the simple concept of national interests, which may or may not be at odds with other countries. Diplomacy is the art of being able to reconcile your national interests, alongside those of other States, compromising on certain aspects along the way. However, the Atlanticist world view (EU/US/NATO) has shown not to allow for mutual respect, nor for cooperation. Through a number of covert means, they ask for nothing less than for Russia to no longer ascertain its national interests, which makes President Putin #1 Boogeyman in the world today.
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