Russian diplomacy and foreign policy is the only thing restraining Western politicians with an outsized sense of their own power, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova has suggested.
“The collective West has stopped at nothing for a long time. And only the foreign policy, diplomatic efforts, efforts in other directions and a clear course based on international law being pursued by Moscow puts a barrier in the path of those Western political actors who believe there are no borders or constraining factors to restrain them,” Zakharova said, speaking to a Moscow radio station on Thursday.
“If it weren’t for Moscow’s policy, many Western politicians would feel as if there were are no boundaries at all,” the spokeswoman added.
Commenting on the White House’s reaction to President Putin’s remarks comparing unfriendly nations’ policy toward Russia to the Shere Khan and Tabaqui antagonists in The Jungle Book, Zakharova expressed surprise at the response.
“Jen Psaki says the US doesn’t associate themselves with the characters that the Russian president talked about in his address. It’s a shame they don’t – they should, yes, this is about you,” Zakharova quipped.
In a press briefing on Wednesday, when asked to comment on the Russian president’s words, the White House spokeswoman told reporters that the US doesn’t “take anything President Putin says personally” and has “tough skin.”
In his speech, Putin said that “every now and then [certain countries] are picking on Russia, for no reason,” and that “of course, all sorts of petty Tabaquis are running around them like Tabaqui ran around Shere Khan…howling along in order to make their sovereign happy.” Putin went on to say that Russia wants to maintain good relations with other countries, but would respond in an “asymmetrical, swift and tough” fashion if its interests were threatened.