More On: Ukraine
At the National Rifle Association, Donald Trump said, 'If we can send $40 billion to Ukraine, we can protect our children's schools.'
Biden was so preoccupied with the Ukraine conflict that he missed Putin's progress in other important places
President Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin will talk by phone on Saturday, as US officials warn that Russia might invade Ukraine within days.
According to a White House official, "they will be speaking Saturday morning." On Monday, Russia offered a call. We made a counter-proposal on Saturday, and they accepted."
At the daily White House press conference on Friday, Biden's national security advisor Jake Sullivan suggested that US citizens should leave the Eastern European country within "24 to 48 hours."
Biden told NBC's Lester Holt on Thursday that deploying US soldiers to Ukraine to rescue Americans if Russia invades would result in a "global war."
Putin has demanded that NATO rule out ever admitting Ukraine as a member, a demand that NATO has refused. However, Biden has said that he does not expect Ukraine to be allowed to the Atlantic alliance anytime soon.
According to the US, Putin has amassed more than 100,000 soldiers along Ukraine's borders. The White House has said that Russia may execute a "false flag" strike on its own military in order to justify war.
When Biden was vice president in 2014, Russia attacked Crimea and took the area from Ukraine after a dubious referendum. Putin's administration is also said to back two pro-Russian separatist entities in eastern Ukraine.
On Monday, Biden threatened to sanction Russia by shutting down the Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline, which is set to begin transporting fuel straight from Russia to Germany rather than via Ukraine.
“If Russia invades — that means tanks or troops crossing the border of Ukraine, again — then there will be no longer a Nord Stream 2,” Biden said during a joint press conference with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz.
Scholz said “we are absolutely united and we will not be taking different steps,” but pointedly refused to say the words “Nord Stream 2” when pressed by reporters at the White House.
Scholz is scheduled to meet with Putin in Moscow on Tuesday.