Oliver Stone calls Trump ‘a disaster,’ denies Putin’s ‘aggression’
Oliver Stone says the United States is “sleepwalking toward a nuclear nightmare” under President Trump.
“It’s been a disaster,” the veteran filmmaker said of Trump’s presidency in an interview with the Australian Broadcasting Corporation released Monday.
“This is a little too early to tell if Trump lasts, but it seems he’s not to be the kind of president who plans, who deliberates,” Stone said.
The “JFK“ and “Nixon” director — who sat down with Russian President Vladmir Putin for a four-part documentary called “The Putin Interviews,” airing on Showtime next month — says he’s “very worried” about the relationship between the U.S. and Russia.
There are several ongoing probes examining Russian interference with the 2016 White House race, and recent reports have indicated at least one current top administration official is among those being investigated.
Stone says he asked Putin about Moscow’s election meddling: “He answered very clearly, and I asked him repeatedly as it has become a big issue in the West and I think he answered very brightly, intelligently. I can’t tell you what he said, watch it for your self and make your own judgment.”
Americans, Stone says “are not listening” to Putin.
“What worries me is that we’re reaching a dangerous threshold — we’ve probably reached it already — where the Western media and Western politicians have insulted him repeatedly, have said it’s ‘Putin’s Russia.'”
Stone, 70, says he has “always questioned” U.S. intelligence agencies, telling the Australian TV program, “The CIA has always been a very dicey operation.”
“The Iraq war, the information they gave [then-President George W. Bush,] seems to be politicized intelligence in order to justify weapons of mass destruction. Again and again we see instances where the intelligence services, not just the CIA but the NSA too, and the FBI, have made huge mistakes and we’ve paid the price.”
The “Snowden” director says no topics were off-limits in the wide-ranging Putin interview.
“I challenged him, and I teased him, and I angered him, I hit every note I could,” Stone said. “The man speaks articulately about what the Russian interests are in the world and I would say to you that they’re not about empire, or expansion, or aggression, or a return to the old days.”
Moscow forcibly annexed the Crimean peninsula from Ukraine in 2014 and has objected to Eastern European nations joining NATO, such as Montenegro has sought to do this year.
The U.S. needs a “strong alliance” with Russia, Stone says, and could find common ground on some subjects. “The world is in a very dangerous position and terrorism is an issue on which we both agree.”
Stone said that, although he’s focused his films on several past presidents, he’s not planning a Trump biopic just yet.
“If the Trump story may right now be a story about a man who is enamored of consumerism or materialism and wants success at any cost, like Nixon a bit, and comes to the office willing to barter what is left of his soul in order to become president, possibly there is an angle there, but you know I’m not there yet.”
“Let’s let some years go by,” Stone added, “and see what happens.”
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