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21 Jan, 2022 12:41

Biden dismisses ‘stupid question’ on Ukraine

A Fox correspondent had shouted why the president was “waiting on Putin to make the first move”
Biden dismisses ‘stupid question’ on Ukraine

On Thursday, a correspondent questioned what she’d apparently perceived as a lack of action by the administration against Moscow, only to get a dismissive characterization by the president. 

“Why are you waiting on [Russia’s President Vladimir] Putin to make the first move, Sir?” Fox News' Jacqui Heinrich shouted as reporters were escorted out of a meeting Biden held with his science and technology advisory team PCAST. The off-hand response he gave was picked up by the mike: “What a stupid question.”

President Joe Biden is continuing to take flak from critics over the remark he’d made earlier this week during his big interview about a hypothetical “minor incursion” into Ukraine by Russia.

During his two-hour-long conference on Wednesday, Biden seemed to imply that small-scale military action by Russia against Ukraine could happen without US retaliation. The White House walked back the remark less than an hour after the event ended, stating that any “cyberattacks and paramilitary tactics” by Russia could trigger punitive actions from Washington.

Biden’s ‘minor incursion’ remark was not only criticized by hawks and critics of the president at home, but was also commented-on unfavorably by the leader of Ukraine. President Volodymyr Zelensky made it known on Twitter that he was aggrieved by it, telling the “great power” that there were “no minor incursions and small nations” and that he considered himself “the president of a great power.”

The US has been claiming that Russia may launch a military invasion of Ukraine at any moment and has threatened to impose overwhelming economic sanctions to deter this. Moscow says it has no plans to attack Ukraine.

While Biden apparently considers preemptive action against Russia a ‘stupid’ idea, some politicians in the US seem to prefer such an escalation. Republican Senator Roger Wicker last month advocated an unrestricted military approach to the conflict and suggested that the US shouldn’t rule out the use of nuclear weapons against Russia in a first-strike launch.