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The Blunder Heard Around the World: World Leaders Forced to Rebuke Biden's Call for Regime Change in Russia

  Remember the line from both the White House and the media after Joe Biden was inaugurated as president? The adults were back in charge, an...

 Remember the line from both the White House and the media after Joe Biden was inaugurated as president? The adults were back in charge, and America was back at the table on a global scale.

Fast forward to this weekend, where the oldest adult in the room — Joe Biden himself — made a series of gaffes that seemed to inch us closer to direct conflict with Russia. It was enough that some of the other leaders at that global table rebuked Biden for his carelessness.

The biggest blunder came at the close of a speech on Saturday, in which he called Russian President Vladimir Putin a “butcher” and declaimed, in text one strongly suspects wasn’t in the original draft of the speech, that, “for God’s sake, this man cannot remain in power.”

As is so frequently the case, the White House stepped in to clarify that Biden’s statement, which strongly suggested the Biden administration was working toward regime change, in no way meant the administration was working toward regime change.

“The president’s point was that Putin cannot be allowed to exercise power over his neighbors or the region,” a statement from the White House said. “He was not discussing Putin’s power in Russia or regime change.”

However, as the Associated Press noted, some of our NATO allies expressed displeasure with Saturday’s Biden speech and the implication of regime change, even if it was just sloppiness.

French President Emanuel Macron said the remarks would make it more difficult to end the war in Ukraine.

“I wouldn’t use those terms because I continue to speak to President Putin, because what do we want to do collectively?” Macron said.

“We want to stop the war that Russia launched in Ukraine, without waging war and without escalation.”

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, meanwhile, issued a more low-key denunciation of the speech.

Asked about the remarks on German TV, he insisted it wasn’t a dangerous mistake. “We both agree completely that regime change is not an object and aim of policy that we pursue together,” he said.

But, again, this wouldn’t have been the takeaway if one just listened to what Biden said — which sounded an awful lot like regime change. And it’s not the only time during the Poland trip where a Biden gaffe seemed to signal we were inching toward direct conflict with Russia.

Before the Saturday speech, Biden visited troops stationed in Poland and seemed to indicate they’d be entering Ukraine soon.

“The average citizen [in Ukraine], look at how they’re stepping up,” Biden said. “And you’re going to see when you’re there, I don’t know if you’ve been there, you’re going to see women, young people, standing in the middle, in front of the damn tank. They’re saying, ‘I’m not leaving. I’m holding my ground.”

As the AP noted, the White House quickly walked that one back, too.

On Monday, Biden insisted he had “no apologies,” nor was he “walking anything back,” according to the AP.

“I was expressing the moral outrage that I felt toward this man,” Biden said. “I wasn’t articulating a policy change.”

“For God’s sake, this man cannot remain in power” sounds a lot like a policy change — but then, why should we have believed him in the first place when he’s so prone to inarticulate, inexact speech? The difference now, of course, is that these gaffes are inching us closer to World War III. If America is back at the table, as is so often the case, Joe Biden has forgotten we’re there.

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