U.S. President Joe Biden speaks to American service members at RAF Mildenhall in Suffolk, England, on Wednesday. Photo: AP/Patrick Semansky
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Biden warns Russia it faces 'robust' response for harmful actions as he begins European visit

48 Comments
By Steve Holland and Trevor Hunnicutt

U.S. President Joe Biden on Wednesday began his first trip abroad since taking office by hailing America's unwavering commitment to the NATO alliance and warning Russia it faced "robust and meaningful" consequences if it engaged in harmful activities.

Biden, speaking to about 1,000 troops and their families at a British air base, said he would deliver a clear message to Russian President Vladimir Putin when they meet next week after separate summits with NATO, G7 and European leaders.

"We're not seeking conflict with Russia," the Democratic president said at the start of his eight-day visit to Europe. "We want a stable and predictable relationship ... but I've been clear: The United States will respond in a robust and meaningful way if the Russian government engages in harmful activities."

Biden has said he is determined to rebuild trans-Atlantic ties and reframe relations with Russia after four rocky years under Republican former President Donald Trump, whose tariffs and withdrawal from treaties strained relations with major allies.

"This is my first overseas trip as president of the United States. I'm heading to the G7, then the NATO ministerial and then to meet with Mr. Putin to let him know what I want him to know," Biden said, drawing cheers from the troops.

"At every point along the way, we're going to make it clear that the United States is back and democracies of the world are standing together to tackle the toughest challenges, and the issues that matter most to our future."

Biden told reporters as he left for Europe that his goals were "strengthening the alliance, making it clear to Putin and to China that Europe and the United States are tight."

His summit with Putin on June 16 in Geneva is the capstone of the trip, an opportunity to raise U.S. concerns directly with the Russian leader about ransomware attacks emanating from Russia, Moscow's aggression against Ukraine and a host of other issues.

Speaking to U.S. troops based at Royal Air Force Mildenhall base, a huge American flag behind him, Biden underscored the U.S. commitment to the NATO alliance but said it needed to modernize and expand its cyber capabilities.

Biden also comes to Europe with a goodwill gesture, the planned announcement that the United States will buy and donate 500 million Pfizer Inc/BioNTech coronavirus vaccine doses to about 100 countries over the next two years, three sources familiar with the matter told Reuters.

Biden is expected to announce the deal on Thursday. The United States has faced criticism over securing access to much of the initial stockpile of the most promising vaccines.

G7 SUMMIT, MEETING WITH JOHNSON

Biden will make his first stop of the trip at the seaside village of St Ives in Cornwall where he will participate in the G7 summit. The meeting is expected to be dominated by vaccine diplomacy, trade, climate and an initiative for rebuilding infrastructure in the developing world. U.S. officials see that effort as a way to counter China's growing influence.

His push for a global minimum tax on multinational corporations faces opposition at home. G7 finance ministers agreed before the summit to pursue a global minimum tax rate of at least 15% and to allow market countries to tax up to 20% of the excess profits - above a 10% margin - generated by about 100 large, high-profit companies.

Republicans came out against the plan this week, potentially complicating the U.S. ability to implement a broader global agreement.

Biden will have a meeting with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Thursday in Cornwall, a chance to renew the U.S.-British "special relationship" after Britain's Brexit break from the European Union. The two countries will issue an updated joint statement of principles between the two countries in honor of the original Atlantic Charter from 1941.

But the two have deep policy issues to discuss, with Biden set to reinforce stalwart U.S. support for the 1998 Good Friday peace agreement that ended decades of bloodshed in Northern Ireland, according to White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan.

The agreement has come into question with the United Kingdom's exit from the European Union.

Biden and Johnson will also discuss climate change, a proposal to counter China's global influence on infrastructure and the withdrawal of Western troops from Afghanistan.

The Russian Nord Stream 2 pipeline will also be on the agenda when Biden meets with German officials. The Biden administration opposes the $11 billion natural gas pipeline, but Germany wants it finished.

After three days of G7 summitry, Biden and his wife, Jill, will visit Queen Elizabeth at Windsor Castle. The 78-year-old Biden met the queen back in 1982 when he was a U.S. senator from Delaware.

RUSSIA AND CHINA

Biden then travels to Brussels for talks with leaders of NATO and the European Union. The agenda is expected to be dominated by Russia, China and the perennial issue of getting NATO allies to contribute more to the common defense.

Biden closes out the trip in Geneva for what could prove to be the most difficult meeting of the trip - a session with Putin, who enjoyed friendly relations with Trump.

Biden said the summit with Putin was timed to follow his G7 and NATO meetings to underscore a sense of allied unity.

No major breakthroughs are expected from the summit.

Asked by reporters if his meeting with Putin would yield some accord on cybersecurity, Biden was non-committal.

"Who knows?" said Biden. "It's going to be a subject of our discussion."

© Thomson Reuters 2021.

©2021 GPlusMedia Inc.

48 Comments

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It’s so nice having a president that stands up to our adversaries instead of kissing their arses.

-8 ( +21 / -29 )

Excellent news,Biden is rebuilding what that silly Trump did.

A strong and robust relationship Europe-U.S.

Europe and the United States are natural allies,by history,culture,heritage and the conception of freedom and democracy.

I very welcome Biden to the old continent and let this be a new start of a strong and genuine relationship.

Dictators like Putin are warned.

-9 ( +16 / -25 )

It’s horrendous to have a president that will not stand up for American national interests and instead promote a pipeline between Russia and Germany while at the same time throwing thousands of Americans out of work by shutting down construction between Canada and the US. Putin and his oligarch cronies are going to rake in billions. I can’t understand why an American president would aid Russian oil companies at the same time Putin’s hackers just shut down an American pipeline on the East coast.

-14 ( +11 / -25 )

It’s horrendous to have a president that will not stand up for American national interests

You must have hated 45.

-5 ( +12 / -17 )

It already has, but go ahead and put some more redlines to amuse the Russians

-5 ( +5 / -10 )

I think the real question on every Republican mind is: "How much will Biden defend Putin to the media after they meet?"

I'm curious if they think the appropriate response would be to defend Putin more than Trump did, or less, but none of them will answer the question for some reason.

-6 ( +6 / -12 )

Translations provided:

"We're not seeking conflict with Russia," - We are seeking conflict with Russian, but hope to confine all wars to helpless third nations.

"We want a stable and predictable relationship ... " - We want a stable relationship the way a master has with his slave. We say jump, and Russia jumps. Plus we get to bomb whoever we want without interference.

"It’s so nice having a president that stands up to our adversaries" - It's so nice having a president who does what the military-industrial-spy complex tells him to do - which is mainly creating conflict and war around the world so we can make blood profits while draining the American taxpayer dry.

7 ( +15 / -8 )

It’s horrendous to have a president that will not stand up for American national interests

Yeah? What do you think of this:

Trump Defends Putin Praise: 'If He Says Great Things About Me' https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MQi5peFD7r8

0 ( +8 / -8 )

Trump was a kitten drinking Putin's milk. Secret meeting. The construction of the pipeline started under Trump's term.

-7 ( +12 / -19 )

Putin is feeling very emboldened due to the orange man.

-5 ( +11 / -16 )

Strangerland: Yeah? What do you think of this:

I was never impressed by Trumps mouth - though he was humorous at times. So what do you think of biden’s support of the Russian pipeline that will undermine US influence in Eastern Europe at the same time Putin’s hackers shut down the gasoline supply on the American East coast? I’m guessing you don’t care in the least.

-7 ( +7 / -14 )

Silly old coot.

2 ( +10 / -8 )

Putin's laughing - he's still got his Siberian candidate at Mar-A-Lago.

0 ( +9 / -9 )

So what do you think of biden’s support of the Russian pipeline that will undermine US influence in Eastern Europe at the same time Putin’s hackers shut down the gasoline supply on the American East coast?

It's hard to answer a question that is loaded with all sorts of fake news. I'm not much of a hypothesizer. Maybe if you asked me a question that dealt with the realities of the situation instead of some extremist rhetorical distortion of the issue, we could have a nuanced debate. It's hard to have a debate when one side isn't willing to accept the clear realities of the situation and is can only see an extremist distortion of it.

I’m guessing you don’t care in the least.

I don't care about a made up situation in the least. Come back at me with a question that addresses the actual facts, and an open mind to a nuanced discussion, and I'll be happy to have one with you.

-1 ( +9 / -10 )

The pipeline is not on American soil. It's on Russian and German soil and under the sea in the Baltic. Any American president has no say on its construction. The deal is between Russia and Germany. Biden has voiced his opinion on it which is about the same as Trump's.

It's a natural gas pipeline, not a gasoline one.

8 ( +13 / -5 )

Ahhh.... A president to doesn't bow down and lick Putin's boots, then sell out the nation to try and get a hotel with his name built.

0 ( +9 / -9 )

As "robust" a response as Biden's complete and utter surrender on the Nordstream 2 pipeline? Like when he refused to authorize sanction against companies that would absolutely prevent what State and Defense have repeatedly suggested was "systematically designed" to hurt allies like Poland and weaken countries under Russian siege like Ukraine?

It's a fact that the Biden Administration has refused to use sanctions against the companies now racing to complete the pipeline. Just like it's a fact that the worst online hacks coming out of Russia have been this year, during the Biden Administration. But the very same people who would scream at a Trump for meeting with Putin face to face (remember the RAGE during Helsinki! lol!) are suddenly silent, even approving, of Biden's rush to have a "robust" Bro-down with Vlad the Bad...

Iran "unclear if prepared to comply", in 2021. Hackers shutting down American energy companies, and demanding ransomware payouts, from Russia, in 2021. China openly threatening war against Taiwan, in 2021. Hamas launching thousands of rockets at Israel, in 2021. Suddenly...Biden hastens to legitimize an autocrat who just tried to murder his latest civilian critic through poisoning his underwear.

"Robust".

If you can't see that the world thinks Biden is a tired, weak and lazy pushover, you're just not paying attention to world news in 2021.

-7 ( +4 / -11 )

Criticizes Biden's actions

It’s horrendous to have a president that will not stand up for American national interests

Criticizes Trump's words, ignoring his (lack of) actions:

I was never impressed by Trumps mouth

0 ( +7 / -7 )

Putin is an expansionist bully. Show him for the little man he is running a crime family that manages a gasoline stand pretending to be a country.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

Remember when the Left used to demonstrate against G7 meetings instead of cheer for them?

-2 ( +6 / -8 )

Thank goodness we won't have any more of the Trump/Vlad Puppet show...with Donald sitting on Vlad's knee and moving his mouth while Vlad speaks...

And Nord 2? If Trump was still President he'd be helping Putin build it, and marketing it as the Trump-Putin Pipeline and Casino...

-4 ( +6 / -10 )

Former American President Donald Trump telling the world that he took Putin's words over American intelligence agencies:

"I will tell you that President Putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial today."

And Trump fans loved it.

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

Remember when the Left used to demonstrate against G7 meetings instead of cheer for them?

I'm left, I've never been against them. So no, I don't remember this.

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

It’s horrendous to have a president that will not stand up for American national interests and instead promote a pipeline between Russia and Germany while at the same time throwing thousands of Americans out of work by shutting down construction between Canada and the US. Putin and his oligarch cronies are going to rake in billions. I can’t understand why an American president would aid Russian oil companies at the same time Putin’s hackers just shut down an American pipeline on the East coast.

Yeah it's pretty hard to understand the action of a fictional president living in Tucker Carlson's and all of his viewers' heads.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

Former American President Donald Trump telling the world that he took Putin's words over American intelligence agencies:

"I will tell you that President Putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial today."

And Trump fans loved it.

It's really weird that they think they have any moral high ground to attack Biden on Russia, when Trump was not only weak on Russia both verbally and through actions, but he literally defended Russian attacks on America. This is less than weak, he literally acted against American interests.

Their complaints fall upon disdainful ears.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

Robust! Just ask a former White House sternographer, who witnessed Biden being "humiliated" by Putin in a previous face-to-face encounter.

"As (then Vice President) Joe Biden’s White House stenographer, I stood directly behind Putin at a distance of five feet. Biden, seated across from Putin at an elegant conference table, was about 12 feet from me.

"About 10 minutes into the meeting, Vice President Biden attempted to start lecturing about his decades-old part in U.S.-Russian negotiations with the dreaded phrase, “I’ve been around a long time. The first time I was here…”

"And… cut.

"Joe Biden got about one sentence further into that spiel when off went his microphone, off went the lights for the TV cameras, and stern Russian voices were commanding the press to leave. And leave they did.

"They went out quickly and efficiently, with videocameras popping off of tripods. Equipment snapping shut. Portable lights clattering down retractable poles. No one spoke, and no one dared linger.

"Across the table, I could see Vice President of the United States Joe Biden, in the now dimly lit room, looking as duped as an exhausted fish in the bottom of a boat. No protest, no complaint. No, hey, I wasn’t finished. Nothing. He was humiliated."

https://thenationalpulse.com/analysis/putin-humiliated-biden-in-moscow-meeting/

Oh yeah, Joe, Putin's real "scared" of you! lol.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

Oh yeah, Joe, Putin's real "scared" of you! lol.

So do you think he should do more ass kissing and defending of Putin to the media than Trump did, or less. It's not clear from your post.

I don't understand why our righties refuse to answer this question. They seem to be indicating they know the right thing to do, but won't express it. Baffling.

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

I am quite sure what he and the media claim will be said, will be quite different from what is actually said.

to let him know what I want him to know....(then)

....Who knows?" said Biden.

so clear and decisive. Yeah who knows, Joe?

-4 ( +6 / -10 )

I am quite sure what he and the media claim will be said, will be quite different from what is actually said.

You're right. I think the solution to this is to have a meeting in private, with no notes allowed to be taken, then defend Putin to the media. You'd agree this is the correct action to take, right?

2 ( +7 / -5 )

Putin: President Biden, it's good to see you - as a good will gesture here is some fake dirt I had my intelligence services make up to help you in your 2024 election...your predecessor loved this stuff...

Biden: What? Get real Vlad - stay our of our elections - permanently - or else...

Putin: Please take a look - some of it is not fake and is actually real....

Here are all the IOUs Donald signed for the Russian loans I and my oligarch colleagues gave him - note the black Sharpie signature...

Here are pictures of your so-called evangelical VP Mike Pence dancing naked at a Nevada cathouse....

Here are receipts for Ted Cruz's latest Caribbean vacation - in Havana....

And Mike Pompeo? He has a donut addiction - here is his monthly Krispy Kreme bill....

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

no, I actually asked how soon after will the Biden-Putin transcripts be released and what the timing of the he private notes of the translators be taken away and when will they be subpoenaed to testify in front of Congress.

You are for this, same as you were last time, right?

You're right. I think the solution to this is to have a meeting in private, with no notes allowed to be taken, then defend Putin to the media. You'd agree this is the correct action to take, right?

-5 ( +5 / -10 )

Yet driving Russia to war is dangerous. Putting Putin in a corner is the road to war.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

I am quite sure what he and the media claim will be said, will be quite different from what is actually said.

Imagine being this upset about what might happen before it even happens. Good grief.

no, I actually asked how soon after will the Biden-Putin transcripts be released and what the timing of the he private notes of the translators be taken away and when will they be subpoenaed to testify in front of Congress.

So you're saying Donald should have released his notes? Or are you saying that neither Biden nor Trump should release their notes? Or are you saying that Biden should release his notes, but not Trump?

1 ( +5 / -4 )

no, I actually asked how soon after will the Biden-Putin transcripts be released and what the timing of the he private notes of the translators be taken away and when will they be subpoenaed to testify in front of Congress.

Then why did you support Trump meeting in private and defending Putin to the media against American interests? The only thing that I see that has changed is the political affiliation of the person speaking. Which would make you a hyper-partisan not grounded in facts, but rather ideology. I've yet to hear you ever indicate anything else. Which makes it hard to have a nuanced discussion, as one of us is debating fact, and the other is debating rhetoric.

If you were able to be reasonable and admit how much of a complete and utter failure Trump was as a leader when it came to defending American interests against Russia and Putin, maybe we could have a nuanced discussion. But right now you're not being reasonable, making it impossible. All you've left us with is to make fun of you, as no reasonable debate can be had. Although I dropped making fun of you for this post.

3 ( +8 / -5 )

Biden received funds from top Russia lobbyist before Nord Stream 2 giveaway

https://nypost.com/2021/05/29/biden-got-cash-from-russia-lobbyist-before-nord-stream-2-giveaway/

why would this not be relevant when Biden is going to meet Putin?

-6 ( +7 / -13 )

Biden received funds from top Russia lobbyist before Nord Stream 2 giveaway

https://nypost.com/2021/05/29/biden-got-cash-from-russia-lobbyist-before-nord-stream-2-giveaway/

why would this not be relevant when Biden is going to meet Putin?

I think he should follow Trump's lead, and discuss it in private, with no notes taken. Then he can tell us about it later.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

why would this not be relevant when Biden is going to meet Putin?

Why would the fact that the Trump organization is financed disproportionately by Russian financiers not be relevant when Donald met with Putin?

0 ( +7 / -7 )

Or, maybe he should pressure Putin to dig up dirt on Trump to prevent the GOP from winning in the next election. He could ask Putin to hack Trump's emails. You must think that's a good idea, right?

2 ( +8 / -6 )

https://thenationalpulse.com/analysis/putin-humiliated-biden-in-moscow-meeting/

https://mediabiasfactcheck.com/the-national-pulse/

Overall, we rate The National Pulse Questionable based on extreme right-wing bias, promotion of propaganda and conspiracy theories, affiliation with a known questionable group, and a few failed fact checks.

Reasoning: Propaganda, Conspiracy, Failed Fact Checks

Bias Rating: EXTREME RIGHT

MBFC Credibility Rating: LOW CREDIBILITY

Nope.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Biden is just unimpressive. Has made so many missteps already. And will struggle to impose his vision and demands on Russia or China or even lesser countries like Iran and DPRK. Sad that the US managed to elect such a mediocrity

-6 ( +5 / -11 )

Russia: A global leader in producing turnips, gypsum, and negative attention "because they have nukes." Nukes!

That's all Russia is. A big crappy country full of corrupt gangster politicians and drunk losers in tracksuits. And turnips. And nuclear weapons.

-3 ( +6 / -9 )

Trump 2024. see ya!

Imagine a president mishandling a pandemic so badly that more than 600,000 Americans die and their presidency ends with higher unemployment than when they begin and still his supporters want more. Genius.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

The disease-bearing winds traverses the oceans and the hills in order to make far-away people sick in their own homes.

Europe and Russia have no big issues at all. God knows they would work well on their own. They have PERFECTLY sane leaders, afterall.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Blacklabel: Biden received funds from top Russia lobbyist before Nord Stream 2 giveaway. https://nypost.com/2021/05/29/biden-got-cash-from-russia-lobbyist-before-nord-stream-2-giveaway/

I think you posted the wrong link. The link above is talking about a $4,000 donation to Biden in October 2020, and obviously you didn't come here to tell us that an amount that gets you a down payment on a used Honda Accord changed Biden's position on the entire trajectory of the Europe's energy supply.

Can you find the correct link and post it?

2 ( +7 / -5 )

With hypersonic nuclear missiles pointing at the west, there will be nothing robust about anything.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

Yet closing the noose around Russia's head is dangerous. What if they believe they are being attacked with nuclear weapons and have only a few minutes to launch? It may not even be President Putin that makes the decision. Something could go very wrong.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Hyper-partisan extremism that chooses ideology over fact.

Chooses a corrupt sociopath over anything thing else. I have yet to see the extreme right support ideology beyond democracies are bad because only the established rich from their demographic should benefit from life being in the US.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

Meanwhile, Putin yawns in fear...

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

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