What Donald Trump thinks about Putin's Russia-Ukraine invasion
Out of the mouth of most other global leaders, the words 'genius', 'smart' and 'savvy' to describe the Russian leader's latest moves would be shocking.
As most of the world’s leaders unite to condemn the invasion of Ukraine by Russian president Vladimir Putin, going further by announcing sanctions and threatening more, former US president Donald Trump has spoken with a very different tone.
Trump praises Putin invasion of Ukraine
On Monday, we watched with little surprise as President Putin signed a decree recognising the independence of the Donetsk and Luhansk, both separatist regions of Ukraine.
Following his decision, international organisations joined the voices of governments around the globe condemning the actions, as troops were sent in under the guise of ‘peacekeepers’. However, maybe just as unsurprisingly, Trump approached the issue from a different perspective, which ended with him going as far as praising the Russian dictator.
More on Russia-Ukraine crisis:
Putin a "genius" for Ukraine actions - Trump
In an interview on 'The Clay Travis and Buck Sexton Show', Trump said Russian President Vladimir Putin's recognition of the Donetsk and Lugansk People's Republics in eastern Ukraine was a "genius" and "pretty smart" move.
“Putin is now saying, ‘It’s independent,’ a large section of Ukraine. I said, ‘How smart is that?’ And he’s going to go in and be a peacekeeper,” Mr. Trump said. “That’s the strongest peace force I’ve ever seen. There were more army tanks than I’ve ever seen. They’re going to keep peace, all right. No, but think of it. Here’s a guy who’s very savvy.”
He even suggested a ‘peace force’ like that would be useful for the southern border of the United States.
Trump claims Putin would not have invaded under his watch
During the interview, Trump repeated his unfounded claims the 2020 election was stolen from him and said that had he remained president, Putin would never have tried something like this.
“I knew that he always wanted Ukraine. I used to talk to him about it,” Mr. Trump said. “I said, ‘You can’t do it. You’re not going to do it.’ But I could see that he wanted it. I used to ask him. We used to talk about it at length.”
"It would never have happened with us. If I had been in office, it wouldn't even be imaginable. You know what Biden's response was? He didn't have an answer," the former president said.
"Russia has become very, very rich during the Biden administration, with oil prices doubling and soon to triple and quadruple. Weak sanctions are insignificant relative to taking over a country and a huge chunk of strategically located land," Trump added.
You can read the full transcript from the Trump interview.