Former FBI Agent Says Tucker Carlson Played Into Russian President’s Hands: ‘He’s A Useful Idiot’

Frank Figliuzzi, the former assistant director for counterintelligence at the Federal Bureau of Investigation has opined that Russian President Vladimir Putin managed to manipulate the Tucker Carlson interview to his advantage and the right-wing commentator played right into his hands.Why It Matters: Figliuzzi criticized the recent interview between Putin and Carlson arguing that Putin, a former KGB officer, is adept at manipulating events to achieve his desired outcomes. He suggested that Putin chose to be interviewed by Carlson, who is not a real journalist, because he knew Carlson would not challenge him, he stated in an opinion piece for MSNBC.  Figliuzzi wrote, “Putin wanted none of that. That’s essentially what Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said. Other Western news outlets have tried to interview Putin. The Kremlin chose Carlson because ‘he has a position that differs from the rest.’”See Also: ‘There’s No Stopping Elon Musk,’ Says Putin In Tucker Carlson Chat; Remains Non-Commital On Releasing Imprisoned US JournalistThe former FBI agent also pointed out that Carlson did not question Putin on several controversial topics, such as the treatment of political opponents and the rise of antisemitism in Russia. “That’s why Putin chose Carlson. He is a ‘useful idiot,’ a phrase often used to describe people vulnerable to easy manipulation and exploitation,” he wrote. He also suggested that the timing of the interview may have been related to ongoing debates in the U.S. Senate about providing further financial aid to Ukraine. Putin may have wanted to make his case to lawmakers who are undecided about the U.S.’s role in Ukraine. Moreover, Putin hinted at the possibility of negotiating an end to the war in Ukraine, which could be a sign of Russia’s weakening position in the conflict.”We can’t really assess how sincere Putin was on this topic because Carlson mostly let him drone on about how Zelenskyy and, strangely, former British Prime Minister Boris Johnson were to blame for the lack of negotiations,” Figliuzzi stated. What Happened: In his first interview with a U.S. journalist since the invasion of Ukraine, Putin said the fight would go on, but that he has no interest in further expansion of the conflict. The interview, conducted by Carlson, was criticized for not being hard-hitting.Putin also clarified that Russia has no intention of expanding its war in Ukraine to other countries, including Poland and Latvia. He stated that Russia would only consider sending troops to Poland, a NATO member, if Poland were to attack Russia.Previously, ex-secretary of State Hillary Clinton also criticized Carlson following his decision to interview Putin, referring to him as a “useful idiot.”Read Next: Tucker Carlson Urges Americans To Watch Interview With Russian President: ‘Like A Free Citizen And Not A Slave, You Can Decide For Yourself’Disclaimer: This content was partially produced with the help of Benzinga Neuro and was reviewed and published by Benzinga editors.Photo by Asatur Yesayants on Shutterstock

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