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ICYMI: Rubio Joins Hannity to Discuss Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine

Feb 23, 2022 | Press Releases

Miami, FL — U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) joined Hannity to discuss Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Watch the full video here.

On Russia’s full invasion of Ukraine: 
“[This is] a pretty clear direction of the plan [Russia] will be executing on. They have begun to execute it. You are already seeing incredibly heavy cyber and electronic warfare and troop movements that are happening. Some of this is already happening in real time. Remember, telecom is going down in different sectors and parts of Ukraine at this point, so you won’t be able to get some of the live feeds on Twitter and the like. 
“In the hours to come you will see a dramatic change in events, certainly by the time the sun comes up. This is it – their military plan has been well understood for some time now and they’ve executed it and we have now reached that stage of execution. We know what comes next. It’s just a matter of hours here…when the sun comes up, people will be able to see it with their own eyes. But it is underway – this is it, unfortunately.” 
On what preliminary Russian cyber attacks against Ukraine indicate:
“If I told you, ‘My plan is A, B, C and D, and I have done A, B, and C,’ you know that D comes right after. We are already seeing parts of [Plan] D happening. 
“For example, it’s not just cyber attacks — they have implanted very sophisticated malware into computer systems. People have actually linked on these [sites] that appear to be the legitimate government sites, but they are instead getting the malware installed into your device. That is one of the dangers of cyber. People all over the world are linking onto live cams that are actually implanting malware, so I would be careful with that kind of thing, [as well as] the electronic warfare [and] the jamming. 
“The airspace in Ukraine at this point is practically closed, and the movement of troops — you can’t hide the radio traffic. There are already pretty indicative reports on Mariupol, [which] is a very important port city, about 50% of their exports go there and you can now hear explosions. They’re gonna go after the air defense system first — they’ll try to knock that out. It’s also pretty clear [from] the way they positioned themselves they’re gonna try to come behind the Ukrainian troops that are in the front line in the east, and cut them off so that they cannot get back to Kiev. This is gonna be a pretty dramatic movement — these are 200,000 soldiers. 
“This is the single biggest military invasion that Europe has seen since the Second World War. This is not small ball. This is big, and I think that by the time the sun comes up, to the extent communications are going to be able to leave the country,  you are going to see a lot with your own eyes.” 
On Vladimir Putin’s goals in invading Ukraine:
“There are a couple of goals here. The first obviously is all the historic stuff [Putin] talked about. He wants to take as much of Ukraine as he can. But the second is, Ukraine is in possession of the third or fourth largest natural gas deposits in the world. They haven’t really exploited it, but it’s sitting there. They were also the breadbasket of the Soviet Union. Ukraine is the fourth largest wheat producer in the world [and] the fifth largest corn producer, so that’s a big deal for Russia.”
On how far the invasion will go:
“The argument [Putin] used for [claiming] Ukraine, he could use for any of the Baltic states. In fact, those Baltic states were part of the Russian Empire much longer than Ukraine ever was. He actually has a better argument in that regard, if that is the argument he is going to make. 
“And the other interesting point is, [Putin] didn’t say he is recognizing just those areas currently occupied by … fake Russian proxies. Those Russian proxies argue that their territory includes areas that the Ukrainian military is currently possessing. [Putin] claims all of that, including these other areas. [His claim] goes pretty far east into the country….
[There is] potential [that Russia will try to take Kyiv]. Kyiv is symbolically important to Russia and to the arguments that Putin made. I think [Putin] most certainly has the pretext to get all the way to Kyiv.”
On the cost Russia will incur occupying Ukraine:
“The problem for [Russia] is [controlling occupied territory]. I keep telling everyone [that the Ukrainian people] are not asking for American soldiers. We are not sending them, and they are not asking for them. These guys are tough people. They will fight. This will be like eating a porcupine. It won’t be fun for Putin.” 
On what lessons the West should take from the invasion of Ukraine:
“There is a big important lesson here. Number one: we cannot let this distract us from China. It’s an important issue and we have to confront it, but China is the big long-term issue that we have to deal with as a country. 
“But the other [part] is, this is what happens when you depend on other countries for your energy[, your food,] and everything else…. We are overly dependent on China for our supply chain, but over 40% of Europe’s natural gas comes from Russia. Putin knows that. I think that’s why Putin is a big fan of the Green New Deal in America, because it has taken away our energy sources and the ability to expand them. It has actually made Russian oil and gas more valuable, made America more vulnerable and Putin more powerful. 
“The most important sanction that America can impose is for Joe Biden to stand up behind the podium and say, ‘I am waving all of these crazy rules we put in place. America is back in the natural gas and oil business. We are gonna make sure that we make up for whatever these countries are losing in that regard, but we’re not going to let Russia continue to monopolize such a large share of the global marketplace….’ 
“And then [Biden should] say, ‘By the way, we will start making things in America so we don’t have to buy things from China and enrich them at our expense.’ That is the lesson that we need to take from this: we cannot continue to be that vulnerable to these countries who are not our friends.”