Video of a Russian tank flying what appears to be the Soviet Union communist flag circulated on social media Friday, adding to concerns that Russian President Vladimir Putin is going to conquer nations beyond Ukraine in an effort to reestablish the Soviet Union.
During a press conference on Thursday, Fox News’ Peter Doocy asked President Joe Biden if he “underestimated” Putin and if he would still describe the Russian leader as a “worthy adversary.”
Biden said he believes Putin has “ambitions” beyond Ukraine, suggesting that the Russian president wants to “reestablish the former Soviet Union.”
“At the time, he was — I made it clear he was an adversary, and I said he was ‘worthy.’ I didn’t underestimate him. And I’ve read most of everything he’s written. Did you read the — I shouldn’t say — I’m not being a wise guy. The — you heard the speech he made — almost an hour’s worth of speeches — why he was going into Ukraine,” Biden said.
“He has much larger ambitions in Ukraine. He wants to, in fact, reestablish the former Soviet Union. That’s what this is about,” the president continued. “And I think that his — his ambitions are — are completely contrary to the place where the rest of the world has arrived.”
The Soviet Union, officially known as the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (U.S.S.R.), was composed of what are now 15 independent nations, including: Armenia, Moldova, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Belarus, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, Kazakhstan and Russia.
Adding to already heightened tensions and suspicions over Putin’s plans, Russia threatened Finland and Sweden with “serious military-political repercussions” if they attempt to join NATO.
“Finland and Sweden should not base their security damaging the security of other countries,” Zakharova said.
“Clearly [the] accession of Finland and Sweden into NATO, which is first and foremost a military alliance, would have serious military-political repercussions that would demand a response from our country,” she added.
Both Sweden and Finland condemned Russia’s attack on Ukraine, and provided aid to Zelenskyy.
“I strongly condemn the military measures Russia has started in Ukraine. Russia’s acts target Ukraine, but at the same time they are an attack on the entire European security order. We feel deep compassion towards Ukraine and are seeking ways to increase our support to Ukraine,” Finnish President Sauli Niinistö tweeted.
“Sweden condemns in the strongest terms Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine. Russia’s acts are also an attack on the European security order,” Sweden wrote on Twitter. “It will be met by a united and robust response in solidarity with Ukraine. Russia alone is responsible for human suffering.”
Just days before attacking Ukraine, Putin said Ukraine was “created by Russia,” according to Newsweek.
“Let’s start with the fact that modern Ukraine was entirely created by Russia, more precisely, by the Bolshevik, communist Russia. This process began almost immediately after the 1917 revolution,” Putin said on Monday.