Donald Trump has praised Russian President Vladimir Putin as a “genius” for his Ukraine invasion plans but claimed that the escalation would “never have happened” if he were still the US leader.
The movement of Russian troops into separatist regions of eastern Ukraine yesterday (February 23) has led the UK government to declare that “the invasion of Ukraine has begun”.
Speaking on Sky News, Cabinet minister Sajid Javid said: “It’s clear from what we have already seen and found out today that the Russians, President Putin, has decided to attack the sovereignty of Ukraine and its territorial integrity."
Putin signed a presidential decree, recognising the independence of the separatist regions, and leaving Twitter users to speculate that World War 3 is about to begin.
Now, interviewed on conservative podcast ‘The Clay Travis & Buck Sexton Show’, former US President Donald Trump has reacted to the news of Russia’s invasion.
“I went in yesterday and there was a television screen, and I said, ‘this is genius’. Putin declares a big portion of Ukraine, Putin declares it as independent. Oh, that’s wonderful,” he said.
“So now Putin is saying, ‘it’s independent’, a large section of Ukraine. I said, ‘how smart is that?’ and he’s going to go in and be a peacekeeper… That’s the strongest peace force I’ve ever seen.
“There were more army tanks than I’ve ever seen, they’re going to keep peace all right.”
Not content with simply praising the Russian leader, Trump also went on to emphasise his personal relationship with Putin.
“Here’s a guy who’s very savvy, I know him very well,” he added.
And, Trump even suggested that the likely Russian invasion of Ukraine wouldn’t have taken place if he had won his second election.
“By the way, this would never have happened with us. Had I been in office, not even thinkable. This would never have happened.
“Here’s a guy that says, you know, ‘I’m going to declare a big portion of Ukraine independent’ – he used the word ‘independent’ – ‘and we’re gonna go in and we’re gonna help keep peace’.
“You gotta say that’s pretty savvy.”
The former US president also claimed that he had foreseen Putin’s goal of annexing Ukraine, noting: “I think he sees this opportunity. I knew that he always wanted Ukraine.
“I used to talk to him about it. I said, ‘you can’t do it, you’re not gonna do it’. But I could see that he wanted it.”
This comes after Trump launched his new social media platform ‘Truth Social’, with the app reportedly plagued with glitches.
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