October 25, 2007
|"Like A Madman With A Razor Blade"||Iran|
Russian President Vladimir Putin warned strongly Thursday against imposing new international sanctions on Iran, in words that appeared to be a response to newly announced U.S. measures to punish Tehran.
Putin spoke hours after Washington cut off Iranian military and banking institutions from the American financial system. The U.S. said the sanctions were in response to Iran's defiance of U.N. demands to curb its nuclear program and its alleged support for terrorism.
Arriving for a summit with European Union leaders, the Russian leader did not make any direct reference to the U.S. announcement., but he said the standoff with Iran will have to be resolved through patient talks.
"Why worsen the situation and bring it to a dead end by threatening sanctions or military action?" Putin asked. "Running around like a madman with a razor blade, waving it around, is not the best way to resolve the situation."
Russia, which is building Iran's first nuclear power plant, has opposed a new push for a third round of U.N. sanctions over the Iranian defiance of a Security Council demand that it suspend enriching uranium. [...]
Speaking at a news conference after talks with Portuguese President Anibal Cavaco Silva, Putin pointed to the long negotiations with North Korea that led to an agreement earlier this year for that communist nation to begin dismantling its nuclear facilities.
"Not long ago it didn't seem possible to resolve the situation with North Korea's nuclear program, but we have practically solved it relying on peaceful means," he said. [Emphasis added]
Bush famously said he looked Putin in the eye and got "a sense of his soul." Putin seems to have done likewise — and he sees a madman running around waving a razor blade. Which pretty much sums it up.