Former President Donald Trump on March 25 predicted that Russian President Vladimir Putin would end up conquering all of Ukraine.
Trump made the comments during the first rally of his 2024 presidential campaign in Waco, Texas.
When the Russo-Ukrainian conflict escalated in February 2022, Trump said, Putin “wanted to get a piece” of Ukraine. “Now, it looks like he’ll end up getting the whole thing.”
Trump said that Putin’s invasion of Ukraine would not have happened if he had been president.
Trump also promised that if he were president, he would end the Russo-Ukrainian conflict “within 24 hours.”
To do this, Trump said he would look into funding and other financial ties between the United States, Russia, and Ukraine to force a compromise.
“As I stand here tonight, I am the only candidate who can say this: I will prevent World War III,” Trump said to a round of applause from his supporters.
Since 2016, Trump has made opposition to foreign entanglements a pillar of his political movement. Trump has blasted the Iraq War and similar conflicts as a “disaster.”
During the 2016 campaign, Trump also contrasted himself with then-candidate Hillary Clinton, telling voters that Clinton would send the United States. to war with Russia if elected.
The takeover of Ukraine, Trump suggested, only happened because he was not in the Oval Office.
“As soon as I was out—or however you wanna describe that catastrophe—they [Russia] started putting soldiers on the border [with Ukraine].”
The Russo-Ukrainian War began in 2014 with Russia’s takeover of the Crimean Peninsula. Following that takeover, tensions between the two nations remained high, but Russia committed no further acts of aggression toward its western neighbor.