Donald Trump is under fire for comments he made during an interview with George Stephanopoulos that seem to suggest the GOP nominee wasn’t aware that Russia invaded Ukraine in 2014. Mondays NY Daily News, for example, calls Trump an “Eastern Bloc-Head” over the remarks:

The New York Times slammed The Donald as well, calling his comments “muddled”:

This is an odd stance for Trump to take because he actually went after Russian President Vladimir Putin over the invasion during a speech at CPAC in March of 2014.

“You know, when he goes in and takes Crimea, he’s taking the heart and soul, because that’s where all the money is,” said Trump to the roomful of conservative activists from around the country. “That’s the area with the wealth. So, that means the rest of Ukraine will fall and it’s predicted to fall fairly quickly.”

Video via Politico with the remarks on Ukraine starting at about the 8:10 mark:


Transcript via CSPAN:

IF YOU LOOK AT JUST WHAT’S BEEN HAPPENING OVER THE LAST COUPLE OF DAYS, RUSSIA AND PUTIN, I WAS IN MOSCOW A COUPLE OF AGO, OWN THE MISS UNIVERSE PAGEANT AND THEY TREATED ME SO GREAT. PUTIN EVEN SENT ME A BEAUTIFUL PRESENT WITH A BEAUTIFUL NOTE. I SPOKE TO ALL OF HIS PEOPLE. YOU LOOK AT WHAT HE’S DOING WITH PRESIDENT OBAMA, HE’S LIKE TOYING WITH HIM. SO HE HAS THE OLYMPICS, THE DAY AFTER THE OLYMPICS HE STARTS WITH UKRAINE. THE DAY AFTER. HOW SMART? HE DIDN’T WANT TO DO IT DURING THE OLYMPICS, BOOM, THE DAY AFTER. SO OUR ATHLETES LEAVE, WE ALL LEAVE AND THE DAY AFTER. YOU KNOW, WHEN HE GOES IN AND TAKES CRIMEA, HE’S TAKING THE HEART AND SOUL, BECAUSE THAT’S WHERE ALL THE MONEY IS. I WAS SURPRISED. I HEARD THAT THE OTHER DAY, THEY WERE SAYING MOST OF THE WEALTH COMES RIGHT FROM THAT AREA. THAT’S THE AREA WITH THE WEALTH. SO THAT MEANS THE REST OF UKRAINE WILL FALL AND IT’S PREDICTED TO FALL FAIRLY QUICKLY. WITHOUT THE MONEY, LIKE THIS COUNTRY, IF WE DON’T MAKE THIS COUNTRY GREAT, IT’S GOING TO FALL. IT’S GOING TO REALLY FALL. IT’S ALREADY FALLEN. YOU GO INTO OUR AIRPORTS AND LOOK AT OUR BRIDGES AND ROADWAYS, WE’RE BECOMING A THIRD WORLD COUNTRY. WHEN YOU SEE WHAT THEY ARE DOING IN UKRAINE, IT’S JUST A QUESTION OF TIME. NOW, PUTIN, HE’S VERY FRIENDLY WITH IRAN. IRAN IS CAUSING US TREMENDOUS PROBLEMS. SYRIA, AFGHANISTAN, IRAQ. IRAN IS NOW SELLING TO IRAQ ITS WEAPONS. IRAN HAS ALREADY TAKEN OVER ESSENTIALLY IRAQ.

 

***