An Oliver Stone documentary, produced as a part of agreements between Stone and the Russian government, frames Russia’s invasion of Ukraine as a result of the CIA and other U.S institutions.
The film, called “Ukraine on Fire,” was featured on Russia’s REN TV Monday night, the second anniversary of the Maidan protests that sparked the Ukrainian revolution.
Stone interviews Russian President Vladimir Putin and ousted Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych in the documentary, which argues Yanukovych was the victim of a U.S.-inspired coup with the intent of pushing back against Russia.
“He was the legitimate president of Ukraine until he suddenly wasn’t on February 22 of this year,” said Stone in a Facebook post after his initial interview with Yanukovych in 2014. “Many witnesses, including Yanukovych and police officials, believe these foreign elements were introduced by pro-Western factions — with CIA fingerprints on it.”
The film argues that “well-armed, neo-Nazi radicals” forced Yanukovych to flee Ukraine after several failed assassination attempts. It also alleges that U.S. organizations ranging from the CIA to United States Agency for International Development were involved in the plot against the former leader.
“That whole process was headquartered in the U.S. embassy,” Yanukovych told Stone when asked if he noticed any U.S. presence during the initial overthrow in 2014.
“This is a very dangerous conversation, a conversation about war,” said Yanukovych. “Nobody should feel safe today.”
Putin told Stone he believes the U.S. needs an existential enemy, and that because Iran is not sufficient, U.S. leaders are now focused on Russia.
Stone, an Oscar-winning filmmaker and Vietnam war veteran, is well-known for his skepticism of U.S. foreign policy and has become increasingly interested in Russia. He has also produced a documentary about Putin (slated for release in 2017) and released another film earlier this year centered on NSA leaker Edward Snowden, who fled to Russia to avoid U.S. authorities.
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