Russian President Vladimir Putin accused the United States of using terrorist groups to overthrow Middle Eastern governments during a speech in Sochi Thursday at the Valdai International Discussion Club.
During the 12th annual meeting, entitled “Societies Between War and Peace: Overcoming the Logic of Conflict in Tomorrow’s World,” Putin spoke to numerous international issues including the ongoing war in Syria and the West’s questionable practices in the fight against Bashar al-Assad.
“Success in fighting terrorists cannot be reached if using some of them as a battering ram to overthrow disliked regimes,” Putin said. “It’s just an illusion that they can be dealt with [later], removed from power and somehow negotiated with.”
“Why play with words dividing terrorists into moderate and not moderate,” the Russian president added. “What’s the difference?”
Since entering the battlefield, Russia has been accused by the US of bombing moderate groups and not ISIL. According to Putin, the US has thus far refused to provide intel on what areas should or shouldn’t be targeted.
“We are being criticized for allegedly hitting wrong targets. Tell us which targets are correct, if you know. But they keep silence,” Putin stated. “Tell us which targets we must not hit — they also refuse to.”
“The international community should realize who we’re dealing with. An enemy, in fact, of civilization, humanity and world culture.”
Putin also blamed the Obama administration for the rise of ISIL and the destabilization of the Middle East during last year’s speech at the Valdai as well.
The Russian president again made similar comments at the United Nations last month, questionably translated by the New York Times, in which he blamed the United States for creating and arming ISIL.
Just last July, Michael T Flynn, the former head of the US Defense Intelligence Agency, admitted during an interview with Al Jazeera that the Obama administration made a “willful decision” to support terrorist organizations in the Middle East after Pentagon documents regarding the policy were uncovered through the Freedom of Information Act.
According to the 2012 document, the Obama administration even ignored warnings that arming terrorist groups would lead to the emergence of an “Islamic State.”