Podiumsdiskussion letzten September: Mit auf der Bühne Vladimir Putin, Russlands gleichberechtigster Demokrat und Romano Prodi, italienischer Politiker. Dem staunenden Publikum wurde beispielhaft vorgeführt, wie Innen- und Aussenpolitik, Berlusconis Entmachtung, Schwule, Europa und Russland, Kaviar und Vodka miteinander zusammenhängen. Und offenbar ist die Ukraine ein souveräner Staat. Auszüge aus dem Transcript.
Putin: Wäre Berlusconi schwul, wäre ihm kein Haar gekrümmt worden.
VLADIMIR PUTIN: Yes, Romano and I have been working together for a long time, and we do have a very good personal relationship. That's how things have played out. In Italy, I have always had good relations with him, and with Mr Berlusconi, with whom he is in constant conflict in the political arena. And Berlusconi is currently on trial for living with women, but nobody would lay a finger on him if he were gay. (Laughter.)
Anyway, I want to talk about Mr Romano's words. Please note that he is not just an intellectual, although he is indeed a professor, a scientist, a true European intellectual. But he is also a European bureaucrat, down to his core. Just look at what he said: relations between Russia and Europe are like caviar and vodka. But both caviar and vodka are Russian products, products of Russian origin. (Laughter.)
After all, Europe is used to the well-known principle of eating from one's neighbours' plate before eating from one's own.
ROMANO PRODI: Let it be whisky and soda.
VLADIMIR PUTIN: Well, whisky and soda is a bad drink to begin with; why ruin the whisky? You should be drinking it straight.
Regarding Ukraine. Ukraine, without a doubt, is an independent state…
Später liess sich Prodi zu einer Lagebeurteilung der bisherigen Diskussion hinreissen:
ROMANO PRODI: I would like to share a brief observation. I'm enjoying our meeting very much. It resembles a circus. We are all like animals, talking here and performing. And we are free animals. Moreover, there are not that many of us. This is exactly the right scale. We can express a large number of viewpoints, and at the same time, we can speak one after another. It's a good combination. And I want to ask you not to change anything, because if there are many participants, like at other forums, then our ideas and the essence of what is happening can be lost, whereas here we fully understand what is happening. And this is a very useful experience.
 Valdai International Discussion Club, 19.09.2013 http://valdaiclub.com/politics/62880.html