Ric Grenell to Newsmax: Putin 'Knows Exactly Who Joe Biden Is' (Newsmax/"Wake Up America")
By Sandy Fitzgerald | Wednesday, 08 December 2021 11:11 AM
Russian President Vladimir Putin's power over President Joe Biden lies in knowing that the president "wants to be loved by the world" rather than concentrating on the United States as a priority, former ambassador to Germany and acting director of national intelligence Ric Grenell said on Newsmax Wednesday.
"Putin knows exactly who Joe Biden is," Grenell said on Newsmax's "Wake Up America." "He's been working with him for a very long time. He knows that Joe Biden is not pushing America first and that he wants consensus with the Europeans."
Grenell's comments come after Biden and Putin spoke Tuesday for two hours while discussing fears that Moscow is getting ready to invade Ukraine.
During the call, Biden warned Putin that the West will impose "strong economic and other measures" on Russia if an offensive is launched into Ukraine. Putin, meanwhile, demanded guarantees that NATO would not expand further east.
Grenell told Newsmax that the situation is "difficult," but that he's not happy that the United States finds itself "being forced into a corner" to decide on a "very bad choice" over Russia.
"We should have been doing things differently over the last 11 months, but now what we are faced with is that the Biden administration has already handed Putin a mountain of leverage through the Nord Stream 2 pipeline," said Grenell.
Now-former German Chancellor Angela Merkel wanted the pipeline before leaving office and "she got this gift from Joe Biden," said Grenell.
And with Olaf Scholz becoming Germany's new chancellor on Wednesday, Biden is left to deal with the "Greens and the Socialists" in Germany, said Grenell.
"One thing to remember is that Germany stepped away from Europe, and I have always said that our policy, America's policy, should be united with the Europeans who were against the Nord Stream 2 pipeline," said Grenell. "If we wanted to be closer to all of the EU and Europe, we would have stood firm against Angela Merkel and that pipeline."
Grenell added that he can't stop thinking about the "weakness" Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris are showing to the world.
"But let's also remember that Barack Obama and Joe Biden are the ones who oversaw a couple of problems that rewrote the borders for Europe," said Grenell. "[Russia] grabbed Crimea and the borders of Ukraine were rewritten."
And then there was Brexit, or when Britain left the European Union, said Grenell.
"The EU lost a member because of the Barack Obama, Joe Biden, Angela Merkel lack of leadership. Putin knows this. Putin has been watching all of this. He sees exactly what's been happening in Europe."
Grenell acknowledged that it was "good diplomacy" for Biden and Putin to speak, and for Biden to be able to call out Russia's actions "and say this is terrible.'
"But let's just remember yesterday, when Putin was looking across the camera and looking at Joe Biden, he was looking at a man that he knew spent four years calling Donald Trump a Russian asset. He knew that wasn't true."
Putin also knew that Biden "lied" to win the election by saying that the reports of damaging information coming from a laptop owned by his son Hunter involved "Russian disinformation," said Grenell.
The former ambassador also discussed Scholz's assuming power in Germany and said it remains to be seen how that will affect the United States.
"[We need] to have ambassadors and diplomats who are pushing hard on the America first agenda and I think what we need to see is a better partnership from the Europeans and the Transatlantic Alliance," said Grenell. "That doesn't mean that we water down our policy so that it becomes weaker. It means that we've got a partner on a lot of different issues, and I think Europe has to be much stronger."
He added that he likes Scholz, and believes him to be a "solid politician" who cares for the United States, but Merkel's leaving is the "end of an era" in Germany, where she was very popular. "Germany, of course, is the biggest economy in Europe, so this is consequential," Grenell said.
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