“It’s a pity it began after the beginning of this war, but we have it,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said when asked by Fox News’ Trey Yingst about his conversations with President Joe Biden and support received from the United States.
“You spoke this week with President Biden. How would you describe your conversations with the U.S. leader? Do you believe the Americans waited too long to give Ukraine the support you need to push back this Russian offensive?” Yingst asked.
“We have good contact. I can tell you the truth,” Zelensky responded. “It’s a pity it began after the beginning of this war, but we have it. My appreciation to him and to his team. We can speak now often.”
During Tuesday’s State of the Union address, Biden presented the United States as entirely supportive of Ukraine and responsible for the unity of European nations and NATO in the face of Russian aggression.
“Six days ago, Russia’s Vladimir Putin sought to shake the very foundations of the free world, thinking he could make it bend to his menacing ways. But he badly miscalculated. He thought he could roll into Ukraine and the world would roll over. Instead, he met with a wall of strength he never anticipated or imagined. He met the Ukrainian people,” Biden said. “From President Zelensky to every Ukrainian, their fearlessness, their courage, their determination literally inspires the world. Groups of citizens blocking tanks with their bodies. Everyone from students to retirees, to teachers turned soldiers defending their homeland. And in this struggle — President Zelensky said in his speech to the European Parliament, ‘Light will win over darkness.’”
“We are ready. We are united. And that’s what we did: We stayed united,” Biden continued later. “We prepared extensively and carefully. We spent months building coalitions of other freedom-loving nations in Europe and the Americas to — from America to the Asian and African continents to confront Putin. Like many of you, I spent countless hours unifying our European Allies.”
Biden’s claims of being responsible for the unification of Russian opposition, however, ignores that much of the response occurred after the invasion began, and was led by European nations or groups, with the United States following from behind.
For example, after initially waiving sanctions against the Russian-owned company behind the controversial Nord Stream 2 pipeline, Biden only imposed sanctions once Germany had already agreed.
“Since Russia began deploying troops to the Ukrainian border, the United States has worked closely with our Allies and partners to deliver a strong, unified response. As I said when I met with Chancellor Scholz earlier this month, Germany has been a leader in that effort, and we have closely coordinated our efforts to stop the Nord Stream 2 pipeline if Russia further invaded Ukraine,” Biden said in a statement.
“Yesterday, after further close consultations between our two governments, Germany announced that it would halt certification of the pipeline. Today, I have directed my administration to impose sanctions on Nord Stream 2 AG and its corporate officers. These steps are another piece of our initial tranche of sanctions in response to Russia’s actions in Ukraine. As I have made clear, we will not hesitate to take further steps if Russia continues to escalate,” the statement continued.
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