Controversial former Trump National Security Council, Alexander Vindman, has claimed that Republicans have “blood on their hands” and accused them of enticing Vladimir Putin. Vindman also suggested that the United States could get pulled into the mess going on between Russia and Ukraine “regardless of what we do at this point.”
This was said during a conversation with MSNBC host Ali Velshi and the transcript of that conversation is below:
ALI VELSHI, MSNBC: Are you a little bit puzzled at the responses coming from some right-wing American media, and now even members of the Republican party that seem to be implying that maybe this isn’t all that bad, there may not be a clear reason why we should be weary of a Russian invasion of Ukraine?
ALEXANDER VINDMAN: Well, it’s part of the reason that Vladimir Putin believed he had the opportunity to conduct this offense. We’re just seeing the first phase. We’re just seeing the first kind of incursion and the recognition of these regions, Donetsk, Luhansk. This is not the end, this is just the beginning.
I think these folks, these right-wing pundits, the GOP that supports them really frankly have blood on their hands because they’re encouraging and enticing this kind of opportunism from Putin and it’s not just playing rhetoric, that you can say something without consequences that too often happens in the United States. This has real consequences and people are gonna die because of this.
VELSHI: What has to happen here? What does the United States need to do at this point? You would have been advising the president in your former job.
VINDMAN: Well, there’s a whole host of things that we can still do. The first thing is that we need to actually start rolling out some of the significant sanctions. This might not be the maximalist scenario we were thinking about. We want to leave some headroom for further sanctions and frankly there are always more things that we can do in the sanctions sphere.
We can challenge Russia at every place that it wants to conduct business. So, we should start to roll out significant sanctions because Russia did invade its neighbor. There’s no question about.
Before it was operating covertly, now it’s operating overtly and that’s a violation to international law and international norms. There has to be consequences. There’s also more that we could be doing in regards with provisioning the Ukrainians to defend themselves because there will be, this is just the opening play there is going to be an enormous amount of violence.
The scenarios that the Biden administration has laid out are more than likely to come to pass. I give it 90%, not one-third probability but 90% probability that we’re heading in that direction. We don’t have this kind of support structures put on Ukraine’s borders just for Putin to declare these locations independent and then roll back troops. He doesn’t end his problems with Ukraine so that’s another thing we can do. Posture change in Europe is a huge thing. Frankly, we might get pulled into this regardless of what we do at this point.
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