Read a transcript of President Joe Biden’s speech following the NATO summit on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on Thursday, March 24.
- “I am getting very tired. Am I the 16th or the 17th? Anyway, all kidding aside, today marks one month since Russia began its carnage in Ukraine, the brutal invasion of Ukraine, and we held a NATO summit the very next day. My overwhelming objective, wanting that summit, was to have absolute unity on three key issues important to our NATO and European allies.
- The first was to support Ukraine with military and humanitarian assistance. The second step was to impose the most severe economic sanctions regime ever imposed in order to punish Putin for his actions.
- The third step was to fortify our NATO allies’ eastern flanks, who were obviously concerned and worried about what would happen.
- We accomplished all three of these, and today we’re determined to sustain those efforts and to build on them. And today I’m announcing that the United States has committed to providing over 2 billion dollars in military equipment to Ukraine since I became president, and our air systems, anti-armor systems, ammunition, and weapons are flowing into Ukraine as I speak, and today I’m announcing that we are prepared to provide more than one billion dollars in humanitarian assistance to help get relief to millions of Ukrainians affected by the war in Ukraine.
- Many Ukrainian refugees will wish to stay in Europe closer to their homes, but we will also welcome 100,000 Ukrainians to the United States, with a focus on reuniting families. We will invest 320 million dollars to bolster democratic resilience and defend human rights in Ukraine and neighboring countries.
- We’re coordinating with the G7 and the European Union on food security as well as energy security, and I’ll have more to say about that tomorrow.
- At the request of more than 300 members of the duma oligarchs and Russian defense companies that fuel the Russian war machine, in addition to the 100,000 US forces now stationed in Europe to defend Nato territory, Nato established, as you already know, four new battle groups from Romania, Hungary, Bulgaria, and Slovakia to reinforce the eastern front.
- Putin was banking on Nato being split into As a result of going into Ukraine, we’ve built that same unity with our European Union and with the leading democracies of the G7 in the G7, so I want to thank you, and I’ll be happy to take your questions. Because there are so many people out there, I’ll give a list now.“
Journalists questions to Biden
- As for Chris or the Associated Press, first, have you seen any indications of action or lack of action from China that has led you to believe whether they will intervene and help Russia either with the sale of arms or the provision of supplies to support this war in Ukraine?
- Second, can you say whether this conversation turned to the subject of food shortages and what the US will do to address them?
- “Yes, we still talk about food shortages, and the price of these sanctions is imposed on an awful lot of countries, including European countries and our own country, as well. For example, we had a long discussion in the G7 with both the United States and Canada, which has the world’s third largest producer of wheat, and we both talked about how we could increase and disseminate food shortages more rapidly.
- We also discussed a significant major US investment, among other things, in terms of providing for the need for humanitarian assistance, including food, as we move forward.”
Journalists questions to Biden
- To Reena of the Wall Street Journal: Watch out! You’re hitting the nail on the head there now. Mr. President, in your opinion, does President Zelensky need to cede any Ukrainian territory in order to gain a ceasefire with Russia, or is that completely off the table?
- Sir, you’ve made it clear throughout this conflict that you do not want to see World War III, but is it possible that by stating that so early in the conflict, you were too quick to rule out direct military intervention in this war; could Putin have been emboldened knowing that you were not going to get involved directly in this conflict; and, to clarify on chemical weapons, if chemical weapons were used in Ukraine, it would trigger a response in kind, whether you’re asking
- Der Spiegel, Marcus question.
- “Thank you, Mr. President. There is a presidential election coming up in 2024, and as you know, there are widespread concerns in Europe that a figure like your predecessor, perhaps even your predecessor himself, might be elected president again. So, are there any steps, anything you are trying to do here or NATO is trying to do here these days to prevent what you’re trying to do from falling apart two years from now?”
- Biden answered
- “So elections are a long way off, and my focus is on ensuring that we keep the house in the United States Senate, so that I can continue to do the things that I’ve been able to do in terms of growing the economy, dealing rationally with American foreign policy, and leading the world.
- So, uh, in the next election, I’d be very fortunate if I had that same man running against me. Hold on a second, please. I was supposed to be at the European Union meeting an hour ago and to speak now. I’m thanking you. I said someone hadn’t called on you before.
- Sir, who are you okay with? What makes you think Vladimir Putin will alter course based on the actions you’ve taken today?
- Let’s get something straight. You remember, if you covered me from the very beginning, I did not say that sanctions would deter him. Sanctions never deter you. You keep talking about how sanctions never deter the maintenance of sanctions. The reason I requested this NATO meeting today is to ensure that after a month, we will continue to do what we’re doing, not just next month or the month after that, but for the rest of the year. That’s what will stop him. That’s not what I said.
- The single most important thing is for us to remain united and for the world to continue to focus on what a brute this guy is and how many innocent people’s lives are being lost and ruined.
- We can have everyone stay seated. We could have everyone stay seated. We could have everyone stay seated until the traveling package departs.“