UK Defence Secretary Ben Wallace has said the Russian president has made the mistake of having no allies in his actions, comparing him to Tsar Nicholas I during the Crimean War.
Mr Wallace, a former Scots Guards officer, claimed Vladimir Putin had gone “full tonto” over actions ordering troops into Ukraine.
Russia’s Ministry of Defence has hit back at Mr Wallace’s comments.
According to the RIA Novosti news agency, spokesman Maj Gen Igor Konashenkov said: “We recommend that British servicemen study well not only the geography of Russia, but also its history. In order not to enrich our common military history with their lives to please poorly educated British politicians.”
The Crimean War was fought mainly in the Crimean peninsula between 1853 and 1856 between Russia and an alliance between the British, French and Ottomans.
The Scots Guards joined the fighting in 1854 and were part of the allied victory at the Battle of Alma, near Sevastopol. The allies went on to win the war, which was ended by the Treaty of Paris.
The conflict is remembered in the UK for pioneering nurses Mary Seacole and Florence Nightingale as well as the infamous Charge of the Light Brigade, immortalised in an Alfred, Lord Tennyson poem.
Watch Mr Wallace’s unguarded comments, which came as the minister chatted with serving military personnel alongside the home secretary.