Polish Ambassador to US Says Zelenskyy ‘Leader of the Free World’ – ‘The Takeout’

Russian forces are moving east into Ukraine and the United States and its allies are rushing for a new $800 million military assistance package on the front lines, but what Russian leader Vladimir Putin plans to what to do next in his “special military operation”, which has already decimated large swaths of Ukraine, is not yet known.

“Ukraine is not the last item on Putin’s menu,” Polish Ambassador to the United States Marek Magierowski warned CBS News’ Washington chief correspondent Maj. Garrett in the episode of this week from “The Takeout” podcast, adding that “for years ‘Poland’ has been trying to alert the world to Russia’s neo-imperial ambitions and Putin’s malign intentions.”

Magierowski stressed that all Russians should be held responsible for the devastation and humanitarian crisis in Ukraine, not just Putin, because of propaganda efforts in Russia to mitigate the effects of war in their neighboring country.

“This is not Putin’s war. This is Russia’s war,” Magierowski said. “There’s a tendency among some Western European politicians to blame Putin for what’s happening in Ukraine right now… If you have 70-80% of the population supporting the war, they’re, you know, zombified .”

Since the start of the Russian invasion on February 24, Poland has taken in around 2.7 million refugees from Ukraine, Magierowski said, with the majority of refugees being hosted by Polish citizens in homes, gymnasiums and boarding houses across the country.

Magierowski added that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy is the “leader of the free world right now”, due to his refusal to step down in the face of overwhelming Russian aggression.

“I think Zelenskyy is now a superhero for a lot of us. It’s amazing because he’s a lawyer by profession, then he became a comedian and an actor, then he became quite surprising – that was also a surprise for Poland – that he became president,” Magierowski said. “His image in the world has changed dramatically.”

Highlights from this week’s episode with Marek Magierowski, Polish Ambassador to the United States:

  • On Ukrainian refugees in Poland: “Nearly 2.7 million refugees have already crossed the Polish border since the beginning of hostilities… This is probably the worst humanitarian crisis in the history of Europe in which the host country has not doesn’t need to build refugee camps… It turns out there aren’t any, because an overwhelming majority of these refugees are currently hosted in Polish houses by Polish families, of course, also in boarding schools, gymnasiums, schools and stadiums. But most of them were taken in by the Polish brothers, by Polish families. Many of them decided to stay in Poland. Some of them are returned to Ukraine, some re-emigrated to other European countries such as Germany, France or Sweden, Great Britain, some also to the United States… Moreover, they are mainly concentrated in large cities, which is also a problem for us.So we would like,po ur put it bluntly, spread them out a bit. Yet they are welcome in Poland. We are ready and willing to absorb even more waves of refugees from Ukraine, because I don’t believe this war will end soon. ยป

  • State of the Russian invasion, next steps for Putin: “This is a serious embarrassment for the Russian army. So far they have lost, according to the latest estimates, about 500 tanks, a loss of losses… It is very difficult to predict what will happen next. next week or in a month, two months… The Russians are apparently regrouping They are moving their units to eastern Ukraine The question is to what extent Putin has actually changed the military objectives of this special military operation, whether he will be satisfied to somehow reconquer the two breakaway provinces in the east or create this land corridor, which would connect Lugansk and Donetsk with the Crimean peninsula.”

  • War and Putin“I don’t have much pride in analyzing and navigating Putin’s mind. The only thing I’m sure of is that we’re dealing with pure evil. Absolutely. All those scenes and images that weeks we have seen over the past two years are absolutely outrageous Horrible… And no wonder so many western politicians are now using the term genocide…they don’t hesitate to use very harsh adjectives to describe and define what the Russian army is doing in Ukraine. But I want to be clear on one particular issue. It’s not Putin’s war. It’s Russia’s war. And there is a tendency among some Western European politicians to blame Putin for what is happening in Ukraine now. But when you look at the polls, I know that the polls that are published in Russia are not very credible. But anyway, if you have between 70 and 80% of the population supporting the war e, they are, you know, zombified.

  • War and Putin“I believe that Ukraine is not the last item on Putin’s menu… We are trying to alert the world to Russia’s neo-imperial ambitions and Putin’s malicious intentions. We know Russia for so many years. We have excellent experts who have written thousands of pages of analysis on Russian politics and the politics of Russia, and the brutality of the Russian regime. And now it turns out that it is so difficult to convince some of our European partners, for example, to block imports of oil and gas from Russia, despite the fact that everyone is fully aware that by buying oil, gas, coal and ‘other raw materials to Russia, we finance its war machine.’

  • Zelensky: “I think Zelenskyy is now a superhero for a lot of us. It’s amazing because he- he’s a lawyer by profession, then he became a comedian and an actor, then he became quite surprising, c It was also a surprise for Poland, that he became president… So his image in the world has changed dramatically. He is the leader of the free world right now.”

Executive producer: Arden Farhi

Producers: Jamie Benson, Jacob Rosen, Sara Cook and Eleanor Watson

CBSN Producer: Eric Soussanin
View Email: TakeoutPodcast@cbsnews.com
Twitter: @TakeoutPodcast
Instagram: @TakeoutPodcast
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