Biden’s Dangerous Babbling about Ukraine

President Joe Biden’s erratic statements regarding the invasion of Ukraine and the threat to the longest era of peace and prosperity in the history of Europe do not go unnoticed. The last surprise came last Friday in the symbolic country of Poland, when he finished his speech against the imperialism of the Russian autocrat with an incendiary remark, “For God’s sake, this man cannot remain in power.”

Secretary of State Antony Blinken, highest American diplomat, quickly walked back Biden’s words, saying, “We do not have a strategy of regime change in Russia or anywhere else.” Blinken suggested that the president had stepped beyond Washington’s official policy and that his remarks handed a rhetorical gift to Moscow at a time of unsustainable stress. In the meanwhile, Vladimir Putin’s regime is warning that it is willing to press the red button if it feels its survival is threatened.

Nor did Biden’s remarks go unnoticed by NATO’s major partners. French President Emmanuel Macron suggested yesterday that he “would not use those words,” and that efforts should be directed toward diplomacy and not fueling an “escalation.” The British government took a similar position, adding that “the Russian people will decide the fate of Putin and his cronies.”

Echoing Blinken, leaders in Paris and London made similar remarks about Biden’s irresponsible intervention. Liberal democracies must help stop Putin’s war in Ukraine and help the oppressed Russian society aspire to a system that guarantees its rights and freedoms. But the future of the country must be chosen by the Russians, not by Biden.

Alarming Blunders

How would the American president have interpreted Putin claiming that Biden could not stay one more day in the White House? Why in the world would Bidenb feed the neuroses of an autocrat who justifies a good part of his attacks against the West with thealleged challenge that “the expansion of NATO” represents for Russia, and therefore for his regime?

It is true that Biden’s mistakes are far from something new — not only inside his country, where they are harshly criticized, but outside, too. Just a few weeks ago, he sent the clear message that an attack on a NATO territory would not necessarily entail Washington’s military response.

But the fact that these awkward moments are common does not stop them from being alarming. Quite the contrary, it makes them more so.

Fortunately, they are not representative of the U.S. administration, which has responded to Russia without hesitation just when its strength was questionable because of the chaotic departure from Afghanistan. Washington always seems to be above any authoritarian drift or dangerous babbling from its presidents.

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