In yet another embarrassing display of his ignorance regarding foreign affairs, Donald Trump told ABC “This Week” host, George Stephanopoulos that Vladimir Putin was not going to go into Ukraine.
No, Donald, Putin went into Ukraine two years ago.
Trump spent most of the interview distancing himself from the Republican Party’s position on Ukraine in its platform for the upcoming elections:
‘I wasn’t involved in that. Honestly, I was not involved.’
And despite the fact that he has repeatedly reneged on his ties to Putin and to Russia, he felt he could promise that Putin would not go into Ukraine. Trump spent several minutes repeatedly telling Stephanopoulos that he didn’t know Putin and had never met him, even though he had bragged (lied) about their relationship just a few years ago.
This is not just a matter of two national leaders sharing compliments, as hard as it may be to find anything to compliment. The Republican Party decided to change the U.S. obligations to our NATO allies and removed the section of the platform that required us to provide weapons to Ukraine to defend themselves. But apparently, Donald Trump has no say over his own party’s platform.
And for some reason, Donald Trump doesn’t think that Putin is going to try to take over Ukraine. He told the “This Week” host:
‘Just so you understand. He’s not going to go into Ukraine, all right? You can mark it down and you can put it down, you can take it anywhere you want.’
When Stephanopoulos pointed out that Putin was already in Ukraine, Trump began to babble nonsense to cover his gross lack of knowledge:
‘OK, well, he’s there in a certain way, but I’m not there yet.’
Then he claims that President Obama “is there.”
‘That whole part of the world is a mess under Obama, with all the strength that you’re talking about and all of the power of NATO and all of this.’
Trump continues to get lost in the weeds and starts stuttering:
‘In the meantime, he’s going where — he takes — takes Crimea, he’s sort of — I mean…’
Then Trump decides to lay the blame for Putin’s aggression on the Crimean people and the president.
‘But, you know, the people of Crimea, from what I’ve heard, would rather be with Russia than where they were. And you have to look at that, also.
‘Now, that was under — just so you understand, that was done under Obama’s administration.’
Watch the interview in the video below. The discussion about the softening of the defense of Ukraine and Putin’s aggression starts at the 5:40 mark.
None of this, of course, excuses the fact that Donald Trump simply has no knowledge or awareness of foreign affairs or any control over his own party platform. He’s good at twisting words to reflect what he thinks his target demographic wants to hear. But it’s frightening to think that someone who claims to be qualified to be president has no idea of the very recent actions of a major power that historically has been both our fiercest enemy and one of our closest allies.
Russian made several military forays into Ukraine in 2014, and took over strategic positions within the country. Putin was condemned for this incursion by a number of nations and accused of breaking international law. Although Putin removed some of his units from Ukraine to Syria, as recently as December 2015, he admitted that there were still Russian intelligence operatives inside Ukraine.
Featured image via screenshot from video