Putin's Rule 'Weakening,' Preparation for Power Struggle Underway: Snyder
Snyder said "the equilibrium that keeps Putin in power—mastery over rivals, soft support in the population, integrity of the army—is challenged" by the war.Snyder pointed in a Twitter thread a sign that Putin is "losing control" is that some former Russian officials such as Dmitry Medvedev spoke about the consequences that await Ukraine and the West.
Donald Trump suggested that Ukraine should have done a deal with President Vladimir Putin to prevent Russia invading the country. © BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images President Vladimir Putin (R) and US President Donald Trump shake hands before a meeting in Helsinki, on July 16, 2018.
During an appearance on the The Clay Travis & Buck Sexton Show podcast, the former president suggested that Ukraine could have "given up" the territory of Crimea, which was annexed by Russia in 2014, or agreed not to join NATO.
The remarks came after Trump was asked for his opinion of the photoshoot Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky and his wife, Olena, did for Vogue magazine, which has come under scrutiny given it took place while the country was at war.
President Zelenskyy says Ukrainian forces are counterattacking and advancing towards the captured city of Kherson
UK intelligence states that Russia may see a "significant military and political setback" as Ukraine counterattacks target Russian-occupied Kherson.Throughout the buildup to Russia's invasion of Ukraine, NATO countries, including the US, insisted they would not send troops to the region amid concern that the presence of their personnel on the ground would lead to a dangerous escalation of the conflict.
"Probably not the greatest thing," Trump said, before adding his much repeated stance that the Russia invasion would have "never happened" if he was still president.
"He [Putin] wouldn't have done it with me. He wouldn't have done it. At a minimum, they should have made a deal," Trump said.
"They could have given up Crimea. They could have done something with NATO, 'Okay, we're not gonna join NATO,' and you'd have a country, because I believe Putin wanted to make a deal," Trump said.
"And now I don't think he wants to make a deal. I think it's much tougher to make a deal. He's blowing up the whole place. I mean, he'll take over the whole place. And it's very, very sad to watch what happened with Ukraine. Very, very sad."
Trump said that he does not believe Putin "ever intended" to start a war with Ukraine but will now "rather have the whole country, now that he started."
Ukraine Situation Report: Slovakia Ready To Make A Deal For Its MiG-29s
As new weapon systems continue to arrive in Ukraine, it is still in need of additional fighters and Slovakia says it is ready to make a deal.Jaroslav Nad, Slovakia’s defense minister said on July 25 the small former Soviet Republic is primed to discuss transferring its 11 MiG-29s to Ukraine. The jets are set to be grounded by the end of August, after which Slovakia’s skies will be patrolled by neighboring Czech and Polish jets.
Trump added that the Russian president sending hundreds of thousands of troops and a large amount of military equipment along the two countries' border prior to the invasion was a "great negotiation" tactic.
"And you have hundreds of thousands of people—you may have millions of people, but you have hundreds—when you have buildings like that that are blown up, those are big apartment houses," Trump said.
"And when you look at those buildings totally burned out, those people are all dead. You lost a lot of people. That's a deal that could have been settled. Should have never happened. But if it was going to happen, it could have been settled. And he moved 200,000 troops to the border to negotiate, and he couldn't make a deal — and now I'm not sure you can make a deal very easily."
Trump was previously criticized for comments he made on the The Clay Travis & Buck Sexton Show before Russia's invasion.
Risks, mined waters slow rush to extract grains from Ukraine
Shipping companies are not rushing to export millions of tons of trapped grain out of Ukraine, despite a breakthrough deal to provide safe corridors through the Black Sea. That is because explosive mines are drifting in the waters, ship owners are assessing the risks and many still have questions over how the deal will unfold. The complexities of the agreement have set off a slow, cautious start, but it's only good for 120 days — and the clock began ticking last week.The goal over the next four months is to get some 20 million tons of grain out of three Ukrainian sea ports blocked since Russia's Feb. 24 invasion.
In February, Trump described Putin's tactic of recognizing two self-proclaimed republics in eastern Ukraine and sending Russian troops to the regions under the guise of "peacekeeping operations" as "genius" and "very savvy."
Trump later doubled down on his praise of the Russian president following the backlash, telling a crowd at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida that Putin was "pretty smart" as he had "taken over a country for $2 worth of sanctions" just as the invasion was underway.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine has been contacted for comment.
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Pentagon says Russia has suffered as many as 80,000 casualties in Ukraine and lost thousands of armored vehicles .
An official said the figures are "pretty remarkable considering that the Russians have achieved none" of Putin's objectives from the start of the war.Roughly 70,000 to 80,000 Russian soldiers have been killed or wounded during the first five and a half months of the war, Colin Kahl, the undersecretary of defense for policy, said during a press briefing Monday, adding that the figure is "pretty remarkable considering that the Russians have achieved none of Vladimir Putin's objectives at the beginning of the war.