McCain will write op-ed for Russian newspaper

September 13, 2013
FILE - In this March 28, 2012 file photo, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz. listens during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington. McCain said in an interview posted online Friday that "foreign money" was helping fellow Republican Mitt Romney's presidential hopes and singled out one of his ally's most generous supporters. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin, File)
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) (Jacquelyn Martin/AP)

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) will write an op-ed for the Russian media outlet Pravda in response to Vladimir Putin's New York Times op-ed, McCain's office confirmed Friday.

"Sen. McCain is glad to take them up on the offer and will submit a piece," McCain spokesman Brian Rogers told Post Politics.

The news was first reported by Foreign Policy, which (somewhat unwittingly) facilitated the agreement.

Here's more from FP's John Hudson:

"If John McCain wants to write something for us, he is welcome," Dmitry Sudakov, the English editor of Pravda tells The Cable. "Mr. McCain has been an active anti-Russian politician for many years already. We have been critical of his stance on Russia and international politics in our materials, but we would be only pleased to publish a story penned by such a prominent politician as John McCain."

...

The beginning of this surprising arrangement all started last night when your trusty Cable guy watched an interview between McCain and CNN's Jake Tapper about Putin's latest op-ed. In a nod to Russia's restrictive press policies (Russia is ranked 148th out of 179 in the world for respecting press freedoms by Reporters Without Borders), McCain joked "I would love to have a commentary in Pravda."

After The Cable sent this transcript to Pravda, Sudakov bristled at the idea that his newspaper would be prevented from publishing a column by McCain.

Another Russian newspaper, Kommersant, has agreed to publish a letter responding to Putin written by Rep. Steve Israel (D-N.Y.).

Aaron Blake covers national politics and writes regularly for The Fix.
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Aaron Blake · September 13, 2013