Russia is almost undoubtedly preparing themselves for an invasion of Ukraine, and there is but one nation that has the leverage to attempt to stop them: The United States.
Russia’s leader, Vladimir Putin, has long appeared poised to attempt to reunited the old Soviet Union, with Ukraine and Crimea being his first targets. Crimea’s annexation was likely just the start, in all honesty, and there is little doubt that the former KGB man is thirsty for more.
A recent buildup of Russian forces on the border with Ukraine has now prompted US President Joe Biden to take aim at Putin, and it came with a warning that harkened back to the Obama administration.
President Joe Biden warned Russian President Vladimir Putin that he would be tougher than former President Barack Obama on the issue of Ukraine, as the two leaders spoke on a video call on Tuesday.
After the meeting, Biden’s national security advisor Jake Sullivan said the president warned Putin not to repeat his incursion into Ukrainian territory after he annexed Crimea in 2014 when Obama was president and Biden was vice president.
The moment was tense.
“I will look you in the eye and tell you, as President Biden looked President Putin in the eye and told him today, that things we did not do in 2014 we are prepared to do now,” Sullivan told reporters at the daily press briefing.Advertisement - story continues below
Sullivan said Biden would deploy “clear and decisive” actions, including economic sanctions to punish Russia if they invaded Ukraine.
“The measures we have put on the table are designed to show the Russian government that should it choose to engage in such an invasion, there will be those consequences,” he said.
Biden’s staff did not permit journalists to witness the beginning of the video call between the two leaders or take pictures of the event, but they issued a readout afterward.
Of course, the Biden administration has been a largely ineffectual group on issues ranging from the border to the economy, so there’s no telling how seriously Putin has considered the threat.