Andy Card: One of the president’s first thoughts, from Sarasota to Barksdale, was Vladimir Putin.
Gordon Johndroe: [Putin] was important—all these military systems were all put in place for nuclear alerts. If we went on alert, we needed Putin to know that we weren’t readying an attack on Russia. He was great—he said immediately that Russia wouldn’t respond, Russia would stand down, that he understood we were under attack and needed to be on alert.
Ari Fleischer: Putin was fantastic that day. He was a different Vladimir Putin in 2001. America could have had no better ally on September 11th than Russia and Putin.
‘We’re the Only Plane in the Sky’ Politico 9 Sep 2016
Of course it doesn’t occur to these Americans that maybe it wasn’t Putin who’s become “different” since then. How could that possibility ever appear in their exceptionalist minds?