He felt confident saying the Yeltsin and Clinton had a great relationship, and people felt as if the fall of the Soviet Union could lead to a successor state that is friendly to the US, much like what happened after the fall of the Japanese Empire and the Nazi Reich. He admitted that he wasn’t actually dictating US policy towards Russia at the time, so he admits that this is an unprofessional opinion.

He says that during Medvedev’s administration, the US-Russia relations were the best they had been in 70 years. He pointed to the fact that, when polled, Russians had overall positive opinions of Americans, and Americans had positive opinions of Russia. Russia also helped immensely with getting Iran to negotiate on the Iran deal.

Putin was disgusted by Medvedev fostering warm relations with the US, which is why he took the presidency back and immediately burned all the bridges that Medvedev built with Obama.

The impression throughout the speech that I got is that Putin has been the main deterrent stopping cooperation between the US and Russian regime. Someone asked him later that, if Putin is to blame for the breakdown in relations, if a post-Putin Russia would try to restore relations. His response was that Putin’s successor will likely follow this “Putinism” ideology that treats the West the same way the USSR did.