Key takeaways from Biden’s Warsaw speech
Joe Biden in Warsaw on February 21, 2023 (Photo:REUTERS/Evelyn Hockstein)
On Feb. 21, U.S. President Joe Biden delivered a speech at the Royal Castle in Warsaw, focusing on Russia's full-scale war against Ukraine and the international response to it.
Here are some of the more salient quotes from Biden’s 20-minute address.
“One year ago, the world was bracing for the fall of Kyiv. Well, I have just come from a visit to Kyiv, and I can report: Kyiv stands strong! Kyiv stands proud. It stands tall. And most important, it stands free.”
“When Russia invaded, it wasn’t just Ukraine being tested. The whole world faced the test for the ages.”
"When President Putin ordered his tanks to roll into Ukraine, he thought we would roll over. He was wrong. The Ukrainian people are too brave. America, Europe, a coalition of nations from the Atlantic to the Pacific, we were too unified. Democracy was too strong,"
“We also faced fundamental questions about the commitment to the most basic of principles. Would we stand up for the sovereignty of nations? Would we stand up for the right of people to live free from naked aggression? Would we stand up for democracy? One year later, we know the answers.”
“Instead of an easy victory he perceived and predicted, Putin left with burnout tanks and Russian forces in disarray.”
“He (Putin) thought autocrats like himself were tough and leaders of democracies were soft. And then, he met the iron will of America and the nations everywhere that refused to accept a world governed by fear and force. He found himself at war with a nation led by a man whose courage would be forged in fire and steel: President Zelenskyy.”
“President Putin’s craven lust for land and power will fail. And the Ukrainian people’s love for their country will prevail.”
“A dictator bent on rebuilding an empire will never be able to erase the people’s love of liberty. Brutality will never grind down the will of the free. And Ukraine — Ukraine will never be a victory for Russia. Never.”
“For free people refuse to live in a world of hopelessness and darkness. You know, this has been an extraordinary year in every sense.”
“No one — no one can turn away their eyes from the atrocities Russia is committing against the Ukrainian people. It’s abhorrent. It’s abhorrent.”
“The United States and the nations of Europe do not seek to control or destroy Russia. The West was not plotting to attack Russia, as Putin said today. And millions of Russian citizens who only want to live in peace with their neighbors are not the enemy.”
“To all of you here tonight: Take a moment. And I’m serious when I say this: Turn on and look — turn around and look at one another. Look at what you’ve done so far. Poland is hosting more than 1.5 million refugees from this war. God bless you.”
“The United States and our partners stand with Ukraine’s teachers, its hospital staff, its emergency responders, the workers in cities across Ukraine who are fighting to keep the power on in the face of Russia’s cruel bombardment.”
“We’ll hold accountable those who are responsible for this war. And we will seek justice for the war crimes and crimes against humanity continuing to be committed by the Russians.”
“Freedom. There is no sweeter word than freedom. There is no nobler goal than freedom. There is no higher aspiration than freedom.”
Biden began his Europe tour with a symbolic visit to Kyiv on Feb. 20, despite officially being slated to head to Poland. It was his first visit to Ukraine since the beginning of the Russian full-scale invasion, and the first time any U.S. president visited country since George W. Bush in 2008. Before that, George H.W. Bush visited Kyiv in August 1991 to deliver his famous “Chicken Kyiv” speech before the Ukrainian parliament, and Bill Clinton – in 2000.
The president announced additional assistance to Ukraine, and new sanctions against Russia. He also discussed the potential transfer of long-range missiles to Kyiv with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
We’re bringing the voice of Ukraine to the world. Support us with a one-time donation, or become a Patron!
Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Google News