May 22, 2022

“CANNOT REMAIN” — Biden ups his anti-Putin attacks with a shift in tone

"CANNOT REMAIN" — Biden ups his anti-Putin attacks with a shift in tone

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President Joe Biden had a harsh description ready for Russian President Vladimir Putin after he met with Ukrainian refugees in Warsaw, Poland this morning.

Asked by reporters how the experience of meeting these innocent displaced Ukrainians affected his daily dealings with the Russian autocrat, Biden refused to mince words.

“He’s a butcher,” Biden replied, adding another heady pejorative to a repertoire that has already included calling Putin a “war criminal,” a “murderous dictator, a pure thug who is waging an immoral war against the people of Ukraine,” and “inhumane.”

In addition to meeting with the Ukrainian refugees seeking to escape the death and destruction caused by Russian shelling of their cities, President Biden also met with celebrity chef José Andrés and his staff of volunteers at a food distribution site set up by Andrés’ nonprofit, the World Center Kitchen, which provides meals to the needy at disaster sites around the world.

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Biden was overheard praising Andrés and his volunteers and asking how he could help them, saying “God love ya.”

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Later, Biden told reporters that seeing the refugees and the reception that they have received in Poland impressed him with “the depth and strength of the human spirit.”

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“It’s incredible, it’s incredible. See all those little children. Just want to hug, just want to say thanks. I mean, it’s, just makes you so damn proud,” the American president said.
“Each one of those children said something to the effect, ‘Say a prayer for my dad or my grandfather or my brother who’s back there fighting. And I remember what it’s like when you have someone in a war zone. Every morning you get up and you wonder. You just wonder. And you pray you don’t get that phone call,” he added.
According to the Russian News Agency TASS, senior Russian diplomats did not respond well to the description of their country’s president as ” a butcher.”
“Of course, every time these personal insults narrow the window of opportunity for our bilateral relations under the current [US] administration. One has to be aware of this,” Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov told TASS.
Given the massive — and ever-growing — package of sanctions placed upon Russia and its politicians and oligarchs by the United States and its NATO allies, the idea that bilateral relations between the two global rivals could still exist without a unilateral Russian withdrawal from Ukraine is seen as delusional by foreign affair observers.
If the accurate portrayal of Putin as an indiscriminate murderer offended Russian diplomats, one can only imagine how apoplectic they must be after Biden explicitly called for regime change in their country.
Speaking to a crowd of about a thousand Polish citizens, Ukrainian refugees, and government officials from both countries in front of the Polish presidential palace, Biden made the case for Putin’s ouster.
“Ukraine will never be a victory for Russia for free people refuse to live in a world of hopelessness and darkness. We will have a different future, a brighter future, rooted in democracy and principals, hope and light, of decency and dignity, of freedom, and possibilities,” Biden declared. “For God’s sake, this man cannot remain in power.”
“You the Russian people are not our enemy. I refuse to believe that you welcome the killing of innocent children and grandparents. Or that you accept hospitals, schools, maternity wards, and for God’s sake, being pummeled with Russian missiles and bombs,” he continued.
“This war is not worthy of you, the Russian people. Putin can and must end this war. The American people will stand with you and the brave citizens of Ukraine who want peace…We’re seeing it once again today, the brave Ukrainian people showing that their power of many is greater than the will of any one dictator,” Biden concluded.
It’s difficult to imagine a face-to-face meeting between Biden and Putin going forward after Biden so explicitly calls on the Russian people to overthrow their dictatorial leader.
What’s not difficult to imagine — with increasing levels of anxiety and horror — is that Putin will become so desperate and frustrated by the failure of the Russian armed forces to achieve their military objectives in Ukraine that he will resort to using his weapons of last resort: banned chemical weapons and nuclear missiles.
That very prospect only proves that President Biden is correct. Putin cannot remain in power.
Vinnie Longobardo

is the Managing Editor of Washington Press and a 35-year veteran of the TV, mobile, & internet industries, specializing in start-ups and the international media business. His passions are politics, music, and art.

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