‘Hannity’ on Biden blaming Russia for inflation – Fox News

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This is a rush transcript from “Hannity,” March 14, 2022. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

SEAN HANNITY, FOX NEWS HOST: And welcome to HANNITY.

This is a FOX News alert. Tonight, amid stiff resistance, the Russian Army is attempting to encircle Ukraine’s capital city of Kyiv inch by inch. and tonight it does appear they are making progress albeit slow progress.

Now, President Zelenskyy says that Russia can only take the city if it razes Kyiv to the ground, but that is exactly, probably what is Putin is planning.

This is now an extra ordinarily dangerous time for Ukraine and the entire world and to make things dramatically worse, the world does not have a strong and a decisive U.S. president or U.S. vice president.

Just take a look at your screen. This is drone footage from southern Ukraine were multiple cities are being utterly destroyed by indiscriminate Russian artillery and bombing attacks and what is being described as a medieval siege. There is no power, there is no food, there are no medical supplies.

And just miles and miles of smoldering a apartment complexes, thousand men, women, and children are now dead, including this pregnant woman and her unborn baby.

Now, Putin’s plan to quickly capture Ukraine and install a puppet regime didn’t work well, and now, a very angry Vladimir with his back against the wall and the world watching is hell-bent on blowing up everything and everyone in his path, and that includes, yep, innocent women and children.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

(MUSIC)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have information about people under debris. We have already dug up one person killed.

(MUSIC)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We came to my brother’s, all of us together. The women and children went underground and then some mortar struck on that building. We were trapped underground, and two children died. No one was able to save them.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: Now to their credit, the Ukrainian people, they are fighting hard for their country. But they are severely outmatched, outmanned and outgunned. And as bad as it is now, all indications tonight are things will deteriorate quickly, very quickly on the ground Ukraine. They need weapons ammunition, anti-aircraft systems. The two dozen MiG-29 fighter jets that Poland offered them, that proposal Joe Biden personally vetoed and blocked.

Joe is worried that the deal would upset and anger Putin and Russia. It shows nothing but weakness it reveals how easily Joe is intimidated by Vladimir Putin. Maybe he should be reminding him of the weaponry we have. As we all know, weakness invites aggression.

Just look at what happened over the weekend, Iran nearly destroyed our U.S. consulate building in Iraq with a ballistic missile attack. America needs to be asking tonight of their president, Joe, what are you going to do?

Now, pathetically, it looks like he may be handing over billions in frozen Iranian assets while negotiating to import oil from the number one state sponsor of terror and make Iran and the mullahs of Iran rich again. And the worst part is, as of now, it is Russia and China — they are the ones brokering this deal with the mullahs.

And because Joe Biden is so desperate for a nuclear deal with Iran, even worse than the first one, with Obama and Biden and the mullahs in Iran, they’re pretending it’s attack — oh it’s nothing to worry about. Really? The administration claiming the U.S. wasn’t even the real target. That I call out is total Adam Schiff. I believe that’s a lie.

Joe Biden is the modern day Neville Chamberlain. Iran was targeting Israel they claimed, so no reason to be upset our. Number one ally in the Middle East, no big deal, just Iran being Iran. Really? The administration claims the U.S. wasn’t even the real target again.

So, now, it’s oh no reason be upset. Meanwhile, as bad as all of this is and it’s bad, China is now openly threatening, quote, the worst consequences for any country that supports Taiwan’s military. Here’s a problem we currently have a U.S. military presence right there in Taiwan and we also equip Taiwan with weapons and training.

So, again, we asked Joe Biden what are you going to do about this overt threat, Joe? Are you going to do anything anywhere at all? Now, China is reportedly ready and willing to ship weapons and other aid to Russia, to help resupply Putin’s bloody invasion of Ukraine.

So it’s kind of official now, Joe. We’ve been telling you it’s happening and occurring for some time China, Russia, Iran, they’re all threatening the U.S. and the world at the same time. And Joe Biden is doing absolutely nothing to counter all of this aggression on the world stage.

And his pathetic, feckless, weakness, it is causing all of this. There is no president in our lifetime weaker than Joe Biden.

Now, with the world crumbling around him, after major failures at home and abroad, Joe — of course, he’s not taking any responsibility. He’s not owning up to any of his screw-ups and he’s not changing course, which is worse.

Instead Joe, oh, I believe everything I screw up is Vladimir Putin’s fault, he is lying to you the American people. Take a look. You decide.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

JOE BIDEN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Second big reason for inflation is Vladimir Putin and gas prices, not a joke. Make no mistake, the current spike in gas prices is largely the fault of Vladimir Putin. It has nothing to do with the American Rescue Plan.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: What was simply embarrassing and humiliating is now beyond dangerous. Joe Biden’s poll numbers are in the tank. The American people see that he’s lying. No one respects him, no one believes him. And maybe it’s time that Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, Jen Psaki stop lying to you, the American people.

Putin is not to blame for the record high gas prices. Joe’s economic and energy policies are.

Putin didn’t block the Keystone XL pipeline, he didn’t ban exploration and auctions on federal lands. Now, the Keystone XL pipeline for example would have been finished now, according to the premier of Alberta in Canada, and we’d have 900,000 barrels of Canadian oil flowing through that pipeline into the U.S. every single day. That oil we could use now.

Now, that was Joe Biden and the New Green Deal socialist Democrats, they stopped this. Putin didn’t spend trillions in cause America’s 40-year record high of inflation and Joe stop lying. Putin didn’t cause that, because long before Putin invaded Ukraine, we had month after month after month, 40-year high after 40-year high inflation. That was you, Joe Biden.

And just like Putin didn’t abandon our fellow Americans in Afghanistan, in case you’re counting like we are, it is day 212. Joe Biden did that, not Vladimir Putin. Putin did not pull out of the country the most dangerous and chaotic way possible and wait until the very end to do it, leading to the deaths of U.S. servicemen and women abandoning our fellow Americans, green card holders, our allies, own some odd $80 billion worth of military equipment — that was all Joe Biden.

Just like Joe Biden ran out of COVID tests and monoclonal antibodies over Christmas, unforgivable, inexcusable, just like Joe gave up energy independence and gave up America being the net exporter of energy. Just like Joe Biden’s disaster at the southern border. You’re going to blame Putin for that too, Joe?

Stop blaming Putin, Joey. You have created one preventable disaster after another. Let’s be clear: Putin is an evil, murdering thug. This is a regime that is looking for as much territory as they can get.

But all of America’s problems did not originate five thousand miles away in Moscow. They’re your policies.

Don’t expect Joe Biden to ever right the ship or take responsibility. That would mean he’d have to admit that — well, Donald Trump was right on the border, right on energy, right on Afghanistan, right on the economy. But that’s never going to happen.

Biden has never been particularly competent. But now, he is also weak, frail and a cognitive mess. I’m not even sure he knows today’s Monday or what day of the week is on any given day.

And on Friday, before jetting off for his weekend of ice cream at Camp David for some rest and relaxation, Biden delivered this truly — even for him — bizarre speech. Take a look.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BIDEN: The moment it opens, it will be disbanded. You hear me? It will blow up.

For mom to get her kid on the Internet to be able to do their homework has to pull in the McDonald’s parking lot — I mean, for real. That’s what’s happening.

This law is going to put an end to all that. It’s going to put people in a much different position to be able to determine their own — their own judgments about when to sell their cattle, when they should — I’m just — it’s going to change things.

I’m on track to be the first president of history to lower the deficit by over one trillion dollars in one year. So I’m sick of this stuff.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: Really? Okay, McDonald’s for internet and selling cattle and, this guy doesn’t have a clue.

Here’s a serious question every American needs to ask tonight: do you feel safe and secure with that man as your president at the helm of your country? Do you really think he has the mental strength and stamina and acuity to make sound decisions? Does he even have the courage to do what is obviously right for you, we, the American people?

And while America’s president is struggling every day, mightily, there are so many people all over the world — they are now risking it all to do what is right. In Russia for example, look at this employee of a TV channel rushed onto the set during a live propaganda broadcast with a sign that read “stop the war, no to war”. She will probably be thrown in prison and faces a 50-year Russian prison sentence.

Let this be an important reminder: never take your freedoms for granted as Ronald Reagan said. Freedom is but one generation away from extinction.

Here with more, Florida Senator Marco Rubio is with us.

Senator, thank you for being here.

SEN. MARCO RUBIO (R-FL): Thanks, Sean.

HANNITY: I don’t have all the answers but I do know this, Senator, that if we — the Ukrainian people have shown the willingness to courageously fight back. If we give them the Javelins, we give them intelligence,, we give them Stinger missiles, and I would argue give them the MiGs and give them the jets that they want, I’m confident that they could do a good enough job with their insurgency back against Putin.

What are your thoughts?

RUBIO: Yeah, I think you’re seeing that play out. Look, I mean, the Russians are bringing to bear about 65 percent — 60, 65 percent of their entire conventional forces are now inside the country of Ukraine.

After 20 years of massive increases in defense spending, I think you’re seeing a couple things — bad planning, no doubt about it. I think you’re also seeing that some of the Russian equipment isn’t as good as advertised.

But the last thing you’re seeing is probably the most important is that will to fight and that’s not something that’s easily measured. You know, you can’t either — I don’t think Putin or the Russian military thought that Ukrainians would fight the way they have right now and they’re playing defense, they’re in a defensive position, which has allowed them for example for weeks to build up defenses around Kyiv.

So I don’t think the Russians are going to be able to go in and take any of these cities. They may be able to level them like you were just saying, but take them? That’s going to be a tough task, especially Kyiv.

HANNITY: So, we have Afghanistan, we know the disaster that that became. We had over the weekend of ballistic missiles from Iran slamming into a base in Iraq, but they’re saying, oh, we weren’t the target. I’m not sure I buy that.

China is warning of the worst consequences of any country that supports Taiwan militarily.

Senator, you know as well as I do that we have an agreement with Taiwan and we are an ally of Taiwan. Are we going to abandon them next?

RUBIO: You know, Sean, I think what this is reminding us of, is if you look at the history of mankind, about 5,500 years of written history, it’s largely been the story of authoritarianism. What we have here in America, you were saying it in your monologue at the outset, is very rare and unique.

Almost all human history has been about authoritarianism and history didn’t end at the fall of the Soviet Union. And now, you have authoritarians in charge in some pretty powerful countries like Russia, like China. And then they have nuclear weapons and places like North Korea and like — and they’re trying to get them in Iran.

And so, what you’re seeing here is a number of countries testing America, testing freedom. They view this as their opportunity right now to expand for a lot of different reasons. They see weakness in the White House. They see distractions and complacency in the West and are we suppose — yeah, I mean do I believe the American people are prepared to do what it takes to defend Taiwan? Absolutely.

But just know, we’re not going to have the same options to sanction China that we’ve had to sanction Russia, which reminds us why we need to protect begin to protect our own economy. One thing is to get cut off of the Russian economy, but right now, we depend way too much on China for the things we buy. We have to stop that.

HANNITY: Senator, I still for the life of me can’t get over the negotiations brokered by Russia and China, between the U.S. and Iran, and that would transfer tens of billions of dollars to the mullahs in Iran, make them rich right off the bat. But then we would be possibly — according to Pete Buttigieg, the genius that he is with all the experience he has, importing oil maybe from Iran, then possibly lifting sanctions with Venezuela and Maduro a murdering dictator thug, and still Joe has been begging OPEC to increase their energy production.

They keep turning him down and he doesn’t turn to Texas, Alaska and Oklahoma for oil and he doesn’t turn to West Virginia and Ohio and Pennsylvania for gas. Why not?

RUBIO: Because these guys have an agenda that becomes an object of like religious worship, right? So like we have to sign the deal with Iran, they’re so obsessed with it. No matter what else is happening in the world, we got to get that Iran deal done. It doesn’t matter how many people they kill, how many terrorist attacks to carry out, we got to do that.

The same with the — you know, the Green New Deal and so forth. They’re so obsessed with it that on the one hand, no matter who we have to buy oil from, as if somehow a barrel of oil from Saudi Arabia were cleaner than a barrel of oil from the United States, no matter who we have to buy from, let’s buy it from them, let’s beg them for it, but let’s not produce it here in America so that we can say — well, at least it isn’t our oil that’s destroying the environment.

I mean, it’s just lunacy. It’s nonsense. It’s left us vulnerable.

The American people see what common sense decisions are. But these guys can’t make that decision because they got radicals in charge of the Democratic Party.

HANNITY: Why are you against the no-fly zone?

RUBIO: Well, I just think the no-fly zone frankly is not what people think it is. It’s not — it would require going to war with Russia. We would have to go after all of their anti-aircraft, their surface-to-air missile, but not just in Ukraine. We’d have to go after them in Russia. We’d have to go after them in Belarus. You’d have to be willing to shoot down any airplanes that fly over the air in Ukraine.

So I just — I don’t think a lot of people fully understand no-fly zones are not some FAA rule that’s put out there. They have to be enforced. You have to actually go out and be willing to shoot people down.

And in the case of Russia, you’re going to have to knock out their surface- to-air missiles. This is not Syria. This is not Iraq.

HANNITY: Yeah.

RUBIO: I mean, these guys have real surface-to-air missiles.

And I just think before we go to World War III, which is what that would be, we have to be prepared to and we have to be prepared to understand clearly what we’re talking about doing here.

HANNITY: All right. Senator, this is very fluid all around the world. Thank you for being with us. Senator Marco Rubio.

Now, I almost never agree, I don’t even like late night liberal host Bill Maher. But asked on Friday, he asked a really good question. Take a listen. You decide.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BILL MAHER, LATE NIGHT HOST: If Putin thought Trump was really that supportive of him, why didn’t he invade when Trump was in office? It’s at least worth asking that question if you’re not locked into one intransigent thought.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

HANNITY: Here now to answer that question from the Trump Organization, Eric Trump is with us.

I think it’s a legitimate question. I had your dad on this program Thursday of last week. He was very clear this would never happen if he was president. Why?

ERIC TRUMP, EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT OF THE TRUMP ORGANIZATION: Well, listen, Putin was in with the KGB. He can read people and he could tell that Donald Trump was a very strong person, right?

And my father was tested, Sean. I mean, Kim Jong-un tried to do it as you remember very well, and what did my father say? You know, Kim, you mess around with us, you will be met with fire and fury the likes of which you have never seen before, right?

And he talked about the button on his desk actually working, et cetera, et cetera, and then a couple months later, they’re shaking hands in North Korea and the relationship was perfect after that.

But he was tested. He showed backbone. He showed strength, right? He represented what America should be.

Biden does the exact opposite of that every single day. I mean, remember, Biden was the same guy that turned away three different shipments of missiles that were going to Ukraine that my father had sent over there, right, my father sent a lot of javelin missiles over there years ago. But there were more shipments that were going over there. Biden literally turned those missiles around and sent them back.

I mean, he’s gotten every foreign policy decision wrong, you know, and the guy’s weak.

And then you look at Kamala who goes over to Poland, and she’s sitting there saying, yes, you know, the Ukraine is a country in Europe and Russia is a large country next door. I mean, you really think that any world leader is taking this nonsense seriously?

HANNITY: No.

E. TRUMP: Sean, he’s a laughingstock. I mean, neither of these guys made the — you know, the varsity football team. That much I can tell you. They’re not — you know, these guys didn’t make the dodgeball team in school. That much I can tell you.

HANNITY: So I talked to your dad and I confirmed with other sources before I asked your dad the question about the conversation when he was going to negotiate with the Taliban before that ever happened. Your father said, that I want you to hear me clearly, I will obliterate you and apparently sent the exact location of the leader of the Taliban where he was during the phone conversation so he basically was saying, I know where you are right now and I can take you out this second.

And for the last 18 months of his administration, he — we didn’t have Americans dying in Afghanistan.

It seems to me that if Vladimir Putin mentions the word “nukes” or you read all these reports all they might use chemical weapons or bio weapons or cyber warfare, et cetera, et cetera, rather than say, we’ll do that to you if you ever dare touch us, it just — you know, it seems like Joe gets afraid.

Poland was willing to give the fighter jets. Joe was the one that vetoed the fighter jets. Why would he veto that?

E. TRUMP: Listen, my father would, you know, call up and he would have said, Vladimir, don’t even think about it. Don’t even try us I’m telling you it’s not going to work out very well for you.

And then when Putin’s watching him literally drone, you know, generals like Soleimani, when he’s watching him drop MOAB bombs on top of mountains, on top of terrorist camps, people knew that Donald Trump was very, very serious and Donald Trump was very unpredictable and Donald Trump was incredibly strong and he would fight for this country.

And, by the way, my father had a great relationship with Putin, all the while he’s sending thousands of Javelin missiles to the Ukraine. Isn’t that really amazing?

I mean, Biden has no relationship with Putin and he’s literally sending blankets to Ukraine. It’s — you know, again, Sean, it’s about strength. It’s about how a message is delivered and my father was very, very good at delivering that message and I think that’s exactly why Bill Maher said.

And listen, Bill Maher is no fan of my father. He’s no fan of our families, but that’s why he’s saying this would have never happened under Donald Trump and frankly he’s — he’s right and I you know I applaud the courage to say that.

HANNITY: Let me pick your economic brain for a minute because Joe Biden inherited energy independence and for the — for the first time in 75 years, we achieved that, and we were a net exporter of energy.

Now, your father I played tape of him lecturing getting right in the face of the head of NATO, telling him how stupid they were to be helped — to be importing all of their energy from Russia. He told — he sent a white flag he told me on Thursday night to Angela Merkel, saying, you might as well surrender now because you’re giving — you’re basically handing over your destiny to Vladimir Putin by doing these multi-billion dollar deals.

How big a factor is that in all of this? Because I think it weakens all of NATO, all of our Western European allies, and there’s no America or American president that’s strong enough to lead right now.

E. TRUMP: My father’s always had great intuition. He was right with this.

And listen, at $40 oil, Russia is not a great economic force, right? They’re actually very small economic force, right? Oil and gas make up the majority of their economy. Now, it’s awfully makes Russia awfully strong when gas is at and oils at $130 a barrel, Sean. It was at $40 under my father. It was at $40.

So, you’re weakening Russia by doing that, you’re also strengthening America by having low oil and gas because effectively like a tax. It’s like you know, it’s like getting rid of a tax in this country.

And my father realized that it’s one of the reasons he wanted this country to be energy independence, one of the reasons that he was so insistent on taking oil and gas from America and exporting it to Europe because it was just that much less oil and gas that they had to buy off of Russia, who was otherwise an adversary.

He had the foresight to think of this. He had the foresight to send missiles, you know, well before Putin ever put troops on the Ukrainian border. He had the foresight to put Javelins in Ukraine.

My father was so far ahead of this whole situation with Nord Stream 2, because this is insane. He wanted the keystone pipeline to be built because that benefited America and he didn’t want the Nord Stream to be built because all that did was benefit, you know, Russia. I mean he was so far ahead of all these issues. He called it right, exactly right.

HANNITY: And he also predicted gasoline would go through the roof and we’re setting a record almost daily.

Eric Trump, always appreciate having you. Thank you for being with us.

Now, remember China and President Xi, they’re watching all of this very closely. Everything that is unfolding in Ukraine, they’re watching the Biden administration’s continued weakness, continued chaos. Joe Biden personally made the decision to prevent Poland. He gave the veto from preventing Poland from giving the MiG jets to Ukraine so they could fight back. Joey is clearly being bullied and is fearful of Vladimir Putin.

And President Joe Biden was late on the one sanction that would have mattered, stopping the importation of Russian oil and had our Western European and NATO allies listen to Donald Trump a couple of years ago, they wouldn’t be in the position they are because they’re still importing the lifeblood of their economy from Putin and making Putin and Russia rich again.

Now, you can thank the Green New Deal climate alarmist cult that Joe Biden answers to for pushing Western European countries right into Putin’s arms. Now, Joey was late and ignored, confronting Putin on his troop buildup from the start.

So ask yourself, what happens if Beijing starts providing Russia with key military assistance like they’re asking for? Will it be time to level sanctions on China too? Their economy is mostly about exports.

So far, China has refused to call out Putin for this destructive evil invasion, killing of men women and children. You know, we’ve seen the images. We’ve shown them to you on this program, of mass graves, one body being tossed on top of another. They have their own territorial ambitions in China, namely Taiwan.

Here to react to that and much more, South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham.

You know, I keep reading that you want the U.S. to put boots on the ground and you told me because, I do not want that, and I asked you, and I said under no circumstances. Can we get that clear tonight?

SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM (R-SC): Yeah, I do not want any American boots on the ground in the Ukraine. I don’t want a no-fly zone, but if there’s the use of chemical weapons by Putin against the Ukrainian people, I would support a no-fly zone because that would be breaking every war crime rule in the book.

And the ban on chemical weapons would be nothing if we didn’t act with a no-fly zone. But right now, no boots on the ground, no-fly zone.

China — China is trying to bail out Putin. If Putin loses, China loses.

So, to the Biden administration, don’t make the same mistake with China you did Russia. If you believe the Chinese are going to help Putin survive by providing military equipment, economic assistance — by the way, they backfill the credit card problem that happened when MasterCard and Visa pulled out of Russia. China’s credit card system took over.

Put on the table for China to read the sanctions that will come your way if you help Putin. I will help you as a Republican, Mr. President, President Biden, if you will write down sanctions — secondary sanctions against China, what will happen to the Chinese economy if they bail out this war criminal Putin. I will be your best ally in the United States Senate.

Write it down now so China can read it because nobody believes you unless you write it down.

HANNITY: I’m not sure if he remembers your name.

Now, we watch large ballistic missiles slam into our base in Iraq fired by Iran. We got a warning this weekend from China that the worst consequences for any country that supports the Taiwan military.

And it seems and make — correct me if I’m wrong, Senator, all the all that Vladimir Putin has to do is mention nuclear weapons, biological chemical weapons, and Joe backs off. Joe vetoed the MiGs from Poland himself. He made that decision according to all the reports.

So, my question is, what is Biden willing to do against all of — in every one of these cases? Because I don’t see a decisive president that has any type of doctrine if you will. We always ask, what is the Reagan doctrine? The Trump doctrine? The Bush doctrine?

What is the Biden doctrine? Bow down and pray, and we slow (ph) and hope for the best?

GRAHAM: Yeah, apparently. Slow and indecisive is his reaction.

But here’s an idea: if you believe Zelenskyy knows what he’s doing and the Ukrainian people are heroic in their efforts to protect their country from a Russian invasion, give them what they say they need. I’m not asking for boots on the ground, I’m not asking for a no-fly zone.

But I spoke to the Ukrainian ambassador at length today. And here’s what she told me: they can fight on the ground. They’re holding their own on the ground. They desperately need some help to control their skies.

They want the MiG-29s. They believe that they had the MiGs, they could really push back against the air power of Russia.

HANNITY: Senator, hang on a second —

(CROSSTALK)

GRAHAM: One hundred, two hundred and three — yeah?

HANNITY: All right. So we’re giving them Javelins. We’re giving them Stinger missiles. Why can’t we give an approval for fighter jets, why not?

GRAHAM: Well, here’s what President Biden says. That’s an offensive weapon. My God, how many Americans are worried about giving the Ukrainians the ability to go on offense?

This idea they will take a squadron of MiG-29s and invade Russia, Ukraine would do that, is stupid and crazy and it’s just a reason to deny them the help that they want because Biden’s afraid of Putin.

Here’s what happened. It was okay for Poland to give the MiGs. We were going to greenlight it. I’m confident that the Putin administration — the Putin government called up Biden and said, if you do that, all bets are off and we fold it like a cheap suit.

So here’s what I want you to understand — what should we do? Help the Ukrainians with a reasonable request. Give them the MiGs. Give them air defense capability they don’t have, and if you can neutralize or at least level out the air power that Russia has against Ukraine, I think Ukraine can win on the ground.

Victory for Ukraine is my message here tonight. Let’s help them achieve victory.

HANNITY: All right. Senator Lindsey Graham, thank you. We appreciate you being with us.

All right. Now also developing tonight, the NATO country of Estonia, they’re actually calling for that no-fly zone over Ukraine but U.S. and U.N. officials continue to urge caution, arguing that such a move would essentially usher in World War III.

So I guess the world’s uh position is let’s kiss Vladimir’s ass, don’t make him mad,, cower like a first grader in front of a bully, I would argue that would be more likely to usher in World War III.

Get this, a new report says Putin is looking to import now Syrian mercenaries to do the quote dirty tricks against the innocent civilians in Ukraine.

Here with reaction, FOX news senior strategic analyst, retired General Jack Keane.

General, it seems that all Putin has to do is threatened or pushed back a little bit and Joe’s like, okay, I don’t — I’m not going to do that. That’s what it seems like to me. What does it seem like to you?

GENERAL JACK KEANE (RET), FOX NEWS SENIOR STRATEGIC ANALYST: Well, he’s trying to internationalize this as best he can. He’s he wanted to get the Belarus military involved but they don’t have much. They got six brigades and they’re lower performers than what we’ve been seeing the Russians do, three mech brigades and three parachute brigades.

But Lukashenko, despite being in his orbit, it is probably he does not want to lose his military out there to the Ukrainians. Now, he’s gone to the Syrians and he and he has gone to them. He’s going to get — he’s asked Assad for some of his Syrian militia which Assad has said yes to, and also an organization called the Fifth Corps which they put together, these are Syrian rebels who converted to support Assad versus rebel against Assad.

What remains to be seen are they coming as personal replacements are they going to come as coherent units?

Now, listen, the Syrian fighters are purported to be experts at urban warfare. Nonsense, that is not the case at all. Did they do some of that? Yes. Are they experts? Far from.

It’s an act of desperation. There’s no way that whether they have 10, 000 of them or 20,000 of them, this is going to be decisive. The Putin’s problem is his army that he’s got deployed on the battlefield in front of the Ukrainians is having a difficult time gaining territorial control due to their poor performance, poor morale, poor discipline and the Ukrainians are just the opposite.

HANNITY: General —

KEANE: Tough, disciplined fighters.

HANNITY: But they — but they have made progress. Now, I give a lot of credit to the Ukrainians fighting back valiantly with the weapons that we’ve been giving them and other countries have been giving them. Do you think America, if we really want them to be successful and defeat Putin’s Russia, that that we should and we ought to not only allow Poland to give them the MiGs but maybe give them fighter jets ourselves?

KEANE: Yeah, I definitely agree with the fighter jets. And listen, the basic thing is this is why I don’t like the president talks about, what are you doing? What’s the issue in Ukraine? Well, I’m trying to prevent World War III.

That’s not the issue. The issue is we’re trying to save Ukraine and save Ukraine as a country as a — as a sovereign independent nation. That’s the mission and we should be all in.

So, yes, I totally agree with sending fighters, this lame thing that went on with Poland is I think it’s very embarrassing.

The second thing that I know for a fact that they need, these — the mission that was run against them this weekend, Sean, where the Russians dropped missiles, eight of them got to the target in Western Ukraine, all fired from outside the country but those missiles can be defeated by integrated air defenses SU-300s and 400s, which are in the Soviet system and NATO countries have them. They are asking for those missile defense systems. They can defeat these cruise missiles that are coming in on those targets and the Russians are firing them not in Ukraine airspace, they’re firing them from their own airspace because of the range that they have.

The air power interdiction that we can accomplish without establishing a no-fly zone is very significant, with the addition of the fighters as you suggest an addition of the sophisticated air defense systems to deal with missiles and airplanes at altitude, which is something that Stingers can’t do. The Stingers can only go out about three thousand — three thousand meters and that’s very limited. Powerful weapon but only good against aircraft that are flying low.

HANNITY: Let me ask you about, you know, we now see every hostile regime, every hostile actor towards the U.S. Obviously, Putin invading Ukraine, also threatening the U.S. You saw that President xi and China is threatening anybody that offers any aid to Taiwan, which we they are an ally of ours.

You saw what happened with the ballistic missile this weekend, Iran firing at our facility in Iraq although Joe was quick to say, oh, no, they didn’t really mean to hit us. I would tend to believe the opposite.

Even North Korea is now saber-rattling with more ICBM tests than they ever have since Donald Trump was president, before he was president. It looks like they see a weak president and that this is going to get worse before it ever gets better. I hope I’m wrong, General.

KEANE: Well, this is a very complicated threat, that we’re dealing with the Trump administration set. This new strategic framework that we’re in a big power competition against Russia, China, but also being threatened by Iran and North Korea. And that set a new stage. It ignored the policies of the past where we were in about appeasement and accommodation and said these are adversaries and we have got to have coherent plans to deter them and confront them when necessary.

This administration came in and I think because they believed it would be much like the Obama administration, right from the beginning, we saw their aggressiveness in testing the Biden administration. Heck, Putin put 70,000 troops on the Ukrainian border in March, 90 days into the administration. And what did this administration do, they delayed the Trump shipment of arms and ammunition that was going to Ukraine. Why? The stated reason publicly was because we did not want to provoke Putin into invading. They did the same thing when there was 150,000 there in the fall of last year. Same reason given.

Yes, other countries look at that and what do they see? They see an unwillingness to confront and they see weakness. And it encourages them, Sean. It emboldens them. This is just common sense that has taken place out there. I mean, there’s no substitute for strength.

HANNITY: If you’re going to give in to these threats and not remind them that there are consequences to them too, then there’s no — there’s no territorial ambition that they can’t just make the threat and do what they want.

Chairman, we love having you. Thank you for being with us.

Also, we continue to follow major developments on the ground involving rescue operations in Ukraine as the Russian invasion has caused millions to flee. Many others are still desperate to get out as Putin’s forces now get closer and closer to the capital Kviy.

Brett Velicovich is with us, a former U.S. army intelligence and special ops soldier. He is part of the team conducting these life-saving operations. He joins us live from Ukraine tonight. Brett, tell us what your group is involved in and what you’re seeing on the ground?

BRETT VELICOVICH, FORMER U.S. ARMY INTELLIGENCE ANALYST: Hey, well, nice to see you again, Sean. I just came out of the capital of key for an operation that we just successfully completed. I’m in Ukraine right now supporting an organization made up of ex-intelligence, ex-special operations personnel that are extracting stranded Americans and allies and Ukrainian women children and elderly. ProjectDynamo.org.

There are thousands, Sean, of Americans who are still trapped in Ukraine, who don’t know what to do or how to get out of the country. So I felt compelled to come out and do something.

It’s really been a wild last week. The situation on the ground is changing rapidly. The humanitarian crisis from the ground perspective is so much worse than I could have ever imagined. And you can’t fully begin to grasp it until you’re on the ground and are actually staring at these refugees in the eyes and you get a glimpse of the horrors that they’ve witnessed, just even getting to us.

It’s terrible. In many cases, there’s no electricity, there’s no heating, food or water in some of these locations. People are literally melting snow to drink or drinking water out of the sewer. You’ve got gas stations not open, stores with limited supplies.

Homes are being looted by Russian troops, hospitals destroyed and Dynamo is trying to get as many people as we can out, but it’s getting harder and harder because Russia is exacerbating this humanitarian catastrophe all around the country. They’re targeting civilians. They’re targeting evacuation routes.

The Russians are trying to tell people they’ve created these green humanitarian corridors but they’re still shooting civilians in it and as a result the team at Dynamo is having to go deeper and deeper into the country as Russia takes more terrain and it’s just frankly getting more and more dangerous for us.

So we’ve got a case right now that’s very serious that’s very personal to us. We have someone that is literally surrounded by the Russians who — they’ve got a Russian tank on that — at one end of the street and on the other end, and they’re driving past trying to get into their house.

And we’ve got individuals that are trapped even at this moment. So, it’s just only getting worse.

HANNITY: And you’ve seen — you know, you’ve done multiple tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan yourself.

We’ve seen the images of women and children dead in the street. We saw that one mass grave being dug and one body being thrown on top of the other. We know the maternity hospital was hit. Reports that some 40 schools are hit, and I’m told that entire neighborhoods have been leveled.

Have you seen that?

VELICOVICH: Absolutely. I mean, look — I just — I was just in the capital and you’re already seeing strikes there as well, but these smaller towns are getting crushed right now by the Russians. I mean, they’re pretending that they’re not striking civilian targets and they absolutely are. We’ve heard that firsthand from some of the individuals that we’ve rescued.

And Putin and Russian troops they’re — they’re war criminals, Sean, plain and simple. They’re in — they insist they’re not targeting civilians, but they absolutely are. They’re bombing these evacuation routes and we’re seeing it firsthand from the men and women that we’ve helped to get out.

And, you know, look, this overall, this is going to be a war of logistics in my opinion. Whoever wins this logistics battle between the Russians and the Ukrainians are going to win this war. The Ukrainians need more weapons.

You know, when I came out of Kyiv with a group of evacuees, we got stopped at no less than probably 40 checkpoints on the way out.

And you see the men and women manning these checkpoints. And you see that they absolutely need more and more weapons to fight. Every single one of these checkpoints at some point are going to have to fight the Russians, and they’re ready to do so. They’re digging in. They’re hardening these sites. And so I see that there’s going to be definitely some logistical challenges going forward and I hope that you know people within the us government help where they can.

HANNITY: Brett, thanks for being with us. Good to have you back. Stay safe there.

Now, the Biden administration is under increasing pressure tonight to facilitate the transfer of Poland’s MiG-29 fighter jets to Ukraine after reports that in fact it was Biden who personally nixed this deal. He put in the final veto.

And the question remains, why aren’t these fighter jets being sent?

Joining us now, the author of the book “The Strategy of Denial,” former Trump Defense Department official, Elbridge Colby, along with Florida Congressman Michael Waltz, who’s one of the 15 lawmakers to send a letter to Biden urging him to facilitate the MiG transfer.

Congressman, why — why hasn’t he done it? Why did he veto that? What’s the difference between Javelins, Stingers and fighter jets?

REP. MICHAEL WALTZ (R-FL): Right. Well, Sean, Congress has — you know, both Republican and Democrat have been pushing Biden all along on this. We pushed him on the Stingers. A bipartisan group went to Ukraine a couple of months ago when the when the administration was sitting on the Stingers. They didn’t get them to a week after the invasion. But just last week, we almost doubled the amount of lethal aid authorized as part of the budget. We added another $40 billion to our defense budget.

We pushed them on the oil ban. We pushed them on dropping them from the World Trade Organization and their permanent trade status. All of those things would have passed through Congress but Biden said no, no, we want to announce it. And so Pelosi backed off, but we are the ones pushing them.

And now, we have the Pentagon saying, well, the Ukrainians really don’t need air superiority. They really don’t need these jets to be able to challenge Russian air superiority, to protect their cities, protect their supply.

HANNITY: OK. I’m not buying that.

WALTZ: It’s ridiculous. It’s a cover — it’s a cover because they’re afraid of Putin’s escalation.

HANNITY: That’s like Biden blaming Putin for a 40-year high for of inflation that happened for the last five months.

WALTZ: Yeah.

HANNITY: That’s like them blaming Putin for high gas prices. It’s all one big lie.

Elbridge, strategically, where would you take this? What are the — what should we be doing? What aren’t we doing? Are we doing anything right at this point?

And when do you — when you add China and Iran to the equation, where does it take you?

ELBRIDGE COLBY, AUTHOR OF “THE STRATEGY OF DENIAL”: Well, Sean, I think as you pointed out, it’s looking bad around the world, and I think as Congressman Waltz pointed out, the Congress is leading the way.

I think the jets — I mean, we missed an opportunity to let the Poles kind of seemed like they had it figured out, and now, it’s sort of blown to high heaven diplomatically, but they seem to make sense. The key here is to help the Ukrainians defeat the Russian invasion, but at the same time avoid World War III. I think that’s a reasonable goal.

And let’s be honest, the Russians have a newer, more modern, more capable nuclear arsenal than we do. So, we need to take that seriously, and the key here — you mentioned some of President Trump’s successes. If you go back to President Reagan, President Eisenhower, the key is to be strong — as you’ve said — to be resolute and not to get pushed around.

But also know what you’re trying to achieve and stick to it, not go too far like we did in Vietnam.

And I think this the thing here, Sean, is Putin I think is into martial arts. I’m not sure which one. But you know, in martial arts if you go too far back like President Biden is, he can push —

(CROSSTALK)

HANNITY: I think he’s — I think he’s in the — I think I know the answer. I think it’s taekwondo. I do an eclectic blend of martial arts.

COLBY: Okay.

HANNITY: Starting with Krav Maga, but go ahead.

COLBY: Right. Well, it’s taekwondo, but yeah — I think — I think it’s in jiu-jitsu. But if you lean too far forward, you unbalance yourself and you allow your opponent to take advantage. And we don’t want to put ourselves into a pretext.

The jets aren’t that. The jets are relevant to the fight. As your guests just said, the logistics are going to be key. The Chinese are probably going to end up supporting the Russians. So we want to help the Ukrainians defend themselves.

But we don’t need to do that in a way — Senator Rubio was talking about the downsides of the no-fly zone. Senator Graham was. I think there’s a way to thread this needle and again it goes back to that model you’re talking about with President Trump, President Reagan and going back even farther.

HANNITY: You know, it’s funny because Donald Trump had quoted to me a number of times, I brought it up on Thursday. Sun Tzu, “Art of War,” keep your friends close, your enemies closer, that was his strategy. Interestingly, he doesn’t like to reveal it.

But thank you both. Elbridge, Congressman, thank you for joining us.

All right. Straight ahead, Greg Palkot will join us. He has the very latest on the ground in Ukraine.

And Kamala Harris embarrassed herself yet again, shocker, over the weekend. We’ve got the tape. Another day of bad poll numbers for Biden, Kayleigh McEnany, Ari Fleischer, they weigh in as we continue.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HANNITY: All right. Now we turn to more big breaking developments on the ground in Ukraine with FOX’s own Greg Palkot is with us tonight.

Greg, what’s going on?

GREG PALKOT, FOX NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Sean, we’re here in Lviv where for the moment, it’s quiet and eerie calm here. There’s a curfew in place, but Russia continues to pound this country from all corners, especially in the capital Kyiv. Main forces, they’re about nine miles outside of the city, but the artillery rounds are hitting a variety of locations across the city, even to the center.

Two civilians were killed when an apartment building was hit, another when a checkpoint was struck, yet another when a bus was slammed.

In the under siege port city of Mariupol, a caravan of 160 cars made it out today, but a humanitarian convoy still was blocked going in. Over 400,000 people there, Sean, are trapped for weeks under intense fire, with no water, heat electricity. All told, according to the Pentagon, some 900 Russian missiles have hit Ukraine, including the battered city of Kharkiv.

Here in the western part of the country, there was another deadly missile strike early Monday morning. We’re now Tuesday morning. We heard another air raid siren just a couple hours ago, but we don’t have a tracking on whether something else was hit. But clearly, Sean, Russia is going for all corners. It’s going for broke.

And remember, those refugees just caught in the middle. A lot of them coming through here, 2.8 million out of the country right now.

Back to you.

HANNITY: Greg, correct me if I’m wrong, but last week, they were 18 miles outside of Kyiv. So it’s slow, albeit very slow, their progress, but they’re closing in on Kyiv, the capital. Is that correct? You’re saying nine miles now out?

PALKOT: Absolutely. We’re saying nine miles now, and what they’re doing to Kyiv is what they’ve done to Mariupol, what they’re doing to Kharkiv, and what they’ve done to Kherson. They are pounding it now. They basically — this capital of Ukraine is under siege. The people there are trapped.

And there is no — there’s no military targets that Moscow is going for now. They’re just going for broke and they’re hitting a variety of civilian targets. It’s uglier and uglier right now — Sean.

HANNITY: That was my worst fear, realized if they get in there sadly, I hope — pray to God I’m wrong. That will be a human massacre.

Greg Palkot, thank you.

Now at the DNC’s winter’s retreat this weekend, Vice President Kamala Harris said the Democrats plan for the midterms is to tell voters that they got what they ordered, and in a way, she’s really right. We played many times on this program Joe Biden saying, for example, we get off all fossil fuels.

All right. Joining us now is our very own Kayleigh McEnany, and also Ari Fleischer with us.

Ari, let’s start with you. I played the montage all the time. Joe Biden said he was going to get us off fossil fuels, I promise you. And then he proceeded to do so and then some people act surprised. Why should they be surprised?

ARI FLEISCHER, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: Yeah, exactly right. And I love Kamala Harris. You know, I’ll never forget when she went to Virginia a week before Glenn Youngkin’s election and she said that promise you, the Democrats are going to win Virginia.

You know, keep her on the road. Keep her talking. Keep her making the case for the Biden administration.

She can’t deliver in a — in a favorable purple state. She certainly is not going to be an asset to this administration going forward. She hasn’t been yet. And yet they think she’s one of their strongest spokespeople one of the people to send to Poland and Romania.

So it’s a flawed administration from top to bottom and the American people have seen it, Sean, and unfortunately, we’re all living it.

HANNITY: And, Kayleigh, who could ever forget — now Ukraine is a country, it’s in Europe, and it’s next to another big — a bigger country and the bigger country invaded the smaller country. And I’m sitting there saying, I think a first grader could explain it on that level and it’s a little frightening and then, of course, the giggling on the world stage at all the inappropriate moments.

I don’t — you know, if you’re talking about refugees, what’s so funny about that?

KAYLEIGH MCENANY, CO-HOST OF “OUTNUMBERED”: Yeah, I mean, Sean, at least she didn’t try to use a Polish accent when she was standing there giggling about refugees, as she did when she tried to use a French accent in France. It’s a total embarrassment.

She went on during that same trip to seem to imply that Ukraine was a part of NATO. It was like at least an implication in the way that she structured her sentence. It’s very embarrassing.

This woman’s a heartbeat away from the presidency and, Sean, I got to tell you, you know, this is number two in line in the Democrat Party and when you look beyond that, you’ve got Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, and that’s just about it.

Now, when I look at our party, the Republican Party — I mean, you could sit here and name 20 names of incredible young talent that we have that is a very deep bench and they got this person Kamala Harris.

HANNITY: Let me ask you, Ari, because you work for a wartime president, President Bush. Thank goodness military technology, weaponry, drone, pushing buttons in Tampa, Florida, now, there is a new way to fight and win wars. That’s how Donald Trump beat the caliphate that grew under Biden- Obama.

At what point — do you see a point where we will militarily have to get involved? Because I don’t know the extent of Putin’s territorial ambitions. Is it the Baltics? Is it Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia? Is it? Nobody knows.

FLEISCHER: Well, we should be militarily involved. We should be militarily involved by building up a fortress called NATO, a bulk work against Putin. That is exactly what alliances do and that is what the NATO alliance needs to be, and that means no hesitation and not being shy about sending armaments — killing armaments, deadly armaments.

If you want to deter war, be strong. That is the lesson.

(CROSSTALK)

HANNITY: Ari, do you see — do you see any strength out of Joe Biden? He won’t even give him the MiGs. He’s the one that vetoed that.

FLEISCHER: No, he’s the problem. I mean, he’s done some things right. I mean, he has started to supply Ukraine. He’s helped Ukraine in many ways, but not enough, not all, and his weakness in Afghanistan was part of the problem that sent a signal to Putin that he might be able to get away with this.

The decision on the MiGs is a terrible decision. You should be helping Ukraine with these things.

But very quickly sean I want to make one point but you’re talking about precision weapons, the United States fights clean and fair, so does Israel. We don’t target civilians. Israel doesn’t target civilians.

The Syrians do. The Russians do. The Iranians do. The Houthis in Yemen.

HANNITY: We got to run but yeah.

FLEISCHER: It is part of America’s moral fabric and I’m proud of that I’m proud of our country.

HANNITY: Ari, Kayleigh, thank you both.

More HANNITY straight ahead.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

HANNITY: All right. Unfortunately, that is all the time we have left this evening. As always, thank you for being with us. You make this show possible.

You know, when you think of — well, what is America’s role in the world? We’re not going to be the world’s policemen, no boots on the ground under any condition, but the Ukrainian people have shown a desire to fight, and I think helping them is the right thing to do.

Let not your heart be troubled. Laura Ingraham’s next. See you tomorrow night.

END

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