The people of Russia “don’t know the truth about what their leaders are doing,” Mike Pompeo, the former US Secretary of State, said, while insisting that his support of Ukraine does not mean he is “rooting against” Russia’s population.

Speaking at an event in Irpin in the Kyiv region on Tuesday and in response to a question from Kyiv Post about Russia's future, he said: “[Russians] have been propagandized. They've lost hundreds of thousands of their brothers and fathers and sons.

“This is an absolute tragedy for the Russian people as well. I want the Russian people to have a successful nation that behaves in a way that's consistent with the values that we all hold.

“That's what I'm praying for.”

Pompeo, who was Secretary of State and CIA director during the Trump presidency, arrived in Ukraine at the invitation of the Victor Pinchuk Foundation and the Yalta European Strategy (YES) forum. He visited the city of Irpin in the Kyiv region, which was occupied by Russia last year. He also met with Ukrainian military personnel who are undergoing rehabilitation with the support of the Recovery Fund.

Mike Pompeo and Victor Pinchuk. Photo by press service of the Viktor Pinchuk Foundation

Mike Pompeo and Viktor Pinchuk. Photo by press service of the Viktor Pinchuk Foundation

In addition, President Volodymyr Zelensky personally met with the American politician and representatives of American businesses. He thanked them for their comprehensive support and invited US entrepreneurs to invest in Ukraine.

Afterward, Pompeo took part in a discussion titled 'Support of Ukraine by the United States of America - What Needs to Be Done and Why It Is Important'.

“Why is it that the United States should expend its resources, its people's resources, to support the effort of Ukraine? This is the question I get asked most often when I'm back home,” Pompeo started his speech.

He explained that it is not a world people want to live “in where someone like Vladimir Putin can make it a shabby place, an indecent place, a place where violence, aggression is rewarded. It's not in America's best interest to permit that to happen,” Pompeo added.

Pompeo compared Russia with China. In his opinion, their two leaders – Putin and Xi Jinping – are similar in their intentions:

“The world that Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping would have us inhabit, that world is also a world that is faithless or hijacks faith on behalf of a political objective. Xi Jinping drives faith from the public square and Vladimir Putin hijacks Orthodox Christianity for the most indecent purposes.”

Pompeo criticized an international community that doesn’t understand the real problems Putin could cause. “The truth is we should never underestimate our adversaries. We should take them seriously. And my regret is that the world didn't do that,” he said.

Pompeo told the audience that when Trump’s team came into the White House, “no nation had been prepared to both help and train Ukrainian forces and to provide defensive weapons systems to Ukraine.” In his point of view, the Biden administration lost “the deterrence bubble. The world lost the deterrence bubble. And here we are now fighting to figure out how to get that back."

The Republican politician believes that the war started in 2014, when Russia occupied Crimea and part of the Luhansk and Donetsk regions.

He does not rule out that Russia might use nuclear weapons against Ukraine in the war. He said that’s why the world's political leaders have to provide the tools that the Ukrainian military needs to finish this war and “to put Vladimir Putin in a place where he sees the cost of continuing this effort exceeding the benefits of continuing the war.”

Mike Pompeo. Photo by press service of the Viktor Pinchuk Foundation

Pompeo calls Russia “the little brother of China” and “a vassal state of the nation of China.” Also, he said that China has already stepped into the war against Ukraine.

In addition, he noted that he is not optimistic about the United Nations. “It's fundamentally broken. It is a vestige of a time gone by,” Pompeo said.

“The fact that the Chinese Communist Party and Russia occupy two seats on the U.N. Security Council, two nations that no more intend to abide by international law than – I don't know. I was going to use a bad word. It's unlikely that they'll comply.

“The truth is, it is indecent to keep [Russia and China] in these organizations and then allow [the UN and its Security Council] to be dysfunctional,” he explained. “And I think the UN has demonstrably failed in the last three, four, five years to deliver on the most important outcomes for the world and at least do the basic things that it was tasked with doing in its own – in its very own charter,” Pompeo said.

Despite everything, Pompeo continues to believe in Ukraine's victory.

“Your victory looks like a stable Ukraine that is sovereign, independent, free, with political control to make its own choices about how it will move forward as a nation.”

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Comments (4)
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There are no nukes, you mouth breathing volcano worshippers. Did you see the international space station attached to the Chinese spy balloon. I can't wait to tell you smooth-brained knuckle draggers about the moon landings.
The past
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Oh inside they know. Outside they pump their chest because fear is the great tamer. It's as old a as the hills vietnam was no different war crimes happened but the silent majority accepted it. So here we are over and o er doing what humans do best denial.
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What an ignorant comment, "Russia’s People ‘Don’t Know the Truth’ About What Putin is Doing ". Are the people in Russia who are against Putin who are being fined, jailed and tortured..are they Russians? The only people who don't know the truth have willingly and willfully aligned themselves with Putin. They accept lies as truth and truth as lies as many, many people do about many subjects. The truth is there for anyone and everyone to know and believe if they are sincerely desirous of truth. It takes a lot of courage to say NO, as did Navalny and the many politicians and journalists who have been jailed or murdered under Putin's regime? Where's your sympathy for them, Pompeio? The Russian army, BY DEED, are murderers, thieves, rapists, looters, pedophiles and generally lawless. This in no time to spout your ridiculous flawed understanding of many Russian people's complicity and agreement with Putin.

Jack Griffin
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@dijon7, Have you ever bothered to watch some of the videos of journalists asking Russian citizens on the street to offer their opinions on the war? Many, particularly the elderly do not wish to respond. You did not speak about the fear factor the majority of Russians possess. You speak boldly from a low level of empathy. Putrid controls the masses through fear. Pompeo is a very brilliant person. #1 in his class at West Point. And you? Who are you to criticize former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo?

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@Jack Griffin,
Jack Griffin
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I wish President-elect Trump would listen to and agree with his Secretary of State. There can be no negotiations. One cannot negotiate with the evil of war crimes and terrorism. Putrid must be destroyed. Negotiations can begin only after Ukraine rids its self of the Russian war criminal terrorists.

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@Jack Griffin, Good morning Jack. Happy Easter to you and your family. You are right that I don't come near Mr Pompeo as far as scholastic achievement goes. I did however live in Russia for 15 years and saw the end of Yeltsins tenure and the rise of Putin's regime. After that I spent 8 years a few kilometers away from Russia in Estonia. I am in weekly contact with friends in Russia and daily with Ukranians. It is true that a majority live in fear in Russia. But that doesn't mean that they don't know the truth or have access to finding it out. There are none so blind as those who refuse to see. Many have bought into Putin's lies about history and his plans to rebuild the Russian empire. Some people are willing to die, or be imprisoned for the truth and others are content to compromise and side with evil by doing nothing about it. I could make this longer Jack, but I stick to my comment that in this particular sentence I quoted, Mr Pompeo is wrong. BTW, he is one of my favorite people, but he is still wrong in this particular statement. Many Russians are willing participants in this genocide and slaughter, especially many older people who liked it the way it was and long for the return of power and status (i.e. bullying) that they were used to before the collapse of the Soviet Union. All the best to you, Jack Who am I to comment about Pompeo? I'm just a nobody exercising his right to free speech. Everyone has the right to believe me or not.