GOP Rep. Wittman: Russian Invasion ‘Has Begun in Its Early Phases’ – Sanctions Should Have Started ‘Months Ago’

On Monday’s broadcast of the Fox News Channel’s “Fox & Friends First,” Rep. Rob Wittman (R-VA) argued that a Russian invasion of Ukraine is “not potential anymore. It has begun in its early phases.” And sanctions “should have begun months ago” as we saw Russia building up.

Wittman said, “I think he’s made up his mind. If you look at the military units that he has deployed there on the border. He now has not removed the troops from Belarus. You see pro-Russian separatists bombing railroad stations and schools. You see the cyberattack has begun. Listen, I think Putin is on his way to invasion. He is resolute in what he is going to do in Ukraine. And I don’t think that anything that the Biden administration does is going to dissuade him.”

He added, “I believe this administration’s abysmal failure in Afghanistan has set the stage for where we are today, and this potential Russian invasion of Ukraine. In fact, I would argue it’s not potential anymore. It has begun in its early phases.”

Wittman concluded, “I think sanctions should have begun months ago. We’ve seen this buildup happen, things like sanctioning the Nord Stream 2 pipeline should have been incrementally put in place as we’ve seen Russia building up. That would be the way to deter them. The only thing that Putin understands is strength. And doing things after the fact, I think, [is] not going to be a way to dissuade him. He is resolute in saying that he is going to take Ukraine. He’s been saying that for years.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett

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