CNN anchor and Chief National Security Correspondent Jim Sciutto seemed unimpressed by President Joe Biden’s planned response to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s latest moves.
“Is this really it?” Sciutto asked, sharing a statement from White House press secretary Jen Psaki on the Biden administration’s immediate response to Putin, which he reportedly planned to implement on Monday using an executive order.
Is this really it? https://t.co/Likm8G8XWb
— Jim Sciutto (@jimsciutto) February 21, 2022
Psaki issued the statement immediately following the news that Russia had officially recognized two pro-Russia regions of Ukraine — Donetsk and Luhansk — as independent republics, promptly signing treaties with them and raising the concern that he could send Russian troops into those regions under the pretext of defending them in accordance with those treaties.
Psaki’s statement read:
We have anticipated a move like this from Russia and are ready to respond immediately. President Biden will soon issue an Executive Order that will prohibit new investment, trade, and financing by U.S. persons to, from, or in the so-called DNR and LNR regions of Ukraine. This E.O. will also provide authority to impose sanctions on any person determined to operate in those areas of Ukraine. The Departments of State and Treasury will have additional details shortly. We will also soon announce additional measures related to today’s blatant violation of Russia’s international commitments.
To be clear: these measures are separate from and would be in addition to the swift and severe economic measures we have been preparing in coordination with Allies and partners should Russia further invade Ukraine.
We are continuing to closely consult with Allies and partners, including Ukraine, on next steps and on Russia’s ongoing escalation along the border with Ukraine.
The White House has said for weeks that Russia was likely to invade Ukraine and would probably use a “false flag” operation to provide cover and legitimacy for any such incursion.
As The Daily Wire reported:
On Thursday, National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan asserted, “Our intelligence community has developed information, which has now been downgraded, that Russia is laying the groundwork to have the option of fabricating the pretext for an invasion. We saw this playbook in 2014. They are preparing this playbook again and we will have, the administration will have, further details on what we see as this potential laying of the pretext to share with the press over the course of the next 24 hours.”
Asked if Russia was “making the case” to invade Ukraine. Sullivan answered: I’m not going to put myself in the head of the Russians. As you see from their public comments, they’ve been — they’ve said many different things. Some of them contradictory. They’ve — different speakers over the course of this week have given both hopeful signs and deeply pessimistic signs. You’ll have to ask them where they stand in respect to their positioning.
Biden has also repeatedly promised to respond with “swift and severe” economic consequences in the event of a Russian invasion.
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