Amid rumors that the U.S. and other allies of Ukraine are urging negotiations between its President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Russia’s Vladimir Putin, the chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee told Newsmax Monday morning that any negotiations should be determined by Zelenskyy alone and not Putin.
“You mean, pleasant President Putin who was indicted last week for war crimes?,” said Sen. Mark Warner, D.-VA, who was featured at a press breakfast in Washington D.C. hosted by the Christian Science Monitor, “That President Putin, the same guy [indicted] by the ICC [International Criminal Court]? The court that neither Russia nor the United States acknowledges or adheres to?”
Warner then said flatly that “the public position of the Administration and of our European and other allies around the world with Ukraine — that the time and place for negotiations are to be set by the Ukrainians is the correct position.”
Regarding to the much-anticipated counter offensive Ukraine is reportedly planning for the spring, the Intelligence Committee chairman warned that “how it materializes is going to be absolutely critical.”
Clearly referring to several Republican presidential candidates who suggest a U.S. retreat from Ukraine, Warner said “I do not think it is in the best interest of the United States or for that matter, democracies around the world, when you've got wannabe American national leaders [who] somehow fail to recognize that the territorial integrity of Ukraine — maintaining that is frankly in the nation's interest.
“And a Putin that is successful in Ukraine,” he warned, “threatens the Baltics, Poland and other NATO nations and encourages Xi’s potential aggression towards Taiwan.”
What Warner called the “naivete” of some “wannabe” political leaders in this country “is really pretty, pretty shocking.”
When we asked Warner whether his feelings and those of his colleagues on the Intelligence Committee is that Ukraine should regain all of its territory including Crimea (which Putin’s forces seized in 2014), he replied that he understood “Ukraine's leadership's aspirational goals. But let's let's see how things things stand after the after the [anticipated] offensive.”
John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.
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