Putin Says Russia Will Achieve Goals, Will Not Bow to West

Putin spoke about the war in Ukraine

Putin spoke about the war in Ukraine

Photo: Sputnik/Mikhail Klimentyev/Kremlin/Reuters

President Vladimir Putin said on Wednesday that Russia will achieve its goals in Ukraine and not submit to what he called a Western attempt to achieve global dominance and dismember Russia.

Putin said Russia was ready to discuss neutral status for Ukraine, three weeks after a war that has killed thousands and forced millions of Ukrainians to flee their homes.

He said what Russia calls a special military operation is “going as planned”.

In a televised address to government ministers, Putin acknowledged the pain Western sanctions are inflicting on the economy, but insisted Russia could withstand the blow.

There was no sign of softening in his bitter insults against the West and Ukraine.

“In the near future, it would be possible that the pro-Nazi regime in Kiev could get its hands on weapons of mass destruction, and their target, of course, would have been Russia,” Putin said.

Putin has consistently described Ukraine’s democratically elected leaders as neo-Nazis bent on committing genocide against Russian-speakers in the east of the country — a line the West denounces as baseless war propaganda.

He stated that Western countries want to turn Russia into a “weak dependent country; violate its territorial integrity; dismember Russia in a way that suits them.”

If the West thought Russia would break or retreat, “they don’t know our history or our people,” Putin said on the 21st day of the war.

“Behind the hypocritical talk and current actions of the so-called collective West are hostile geopolitical goals. They just don’t want a strong, sovereign Russia.”

According to him, Russia is ready to discuss Ukraine’s neutral status in the negotiations: “The issue of principle for our country and its future — Ukraine’s neutral status, its demilitarization and its denazification — we were ready and we are ready to discuss as part of the negotiations.”

Ukraine says it is willing to negotiate an end to the war but will not surrender or accept Russian ultimatums.

In his most explicit acknowledgment of the pain inflicted by Western sanctions, Putin said inflation and unemployment would rise, and structural changes in the economy would be needed. But he promised support for families with children.

“The West doesn’t even bother to hide that its objective is to harm the entire Russian economy, every Russian,” he declared.

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