Chief Researcher for The Glenn Beck Program, Jason Buttrill, joins the show to detail what happened over the weekend in Ukraine. Despite propaganda from BOTH sides, Jason tells Glenn that it does seem like it was a ‘bad weekend’ for the Russian military, which likely thought this invasion would’ve been a LOT easier than the reality they faced. But, just because Russia seems to be struggling more than anticipated, that doesn’t mean Putin simply will give up. In fact, history shows his force used against Ukraine may now get even worse. The questions then become: Will NATO stand for a more brutal Putin and if not, how exactly will the West become further involved?
Below is a rush transcript that may contain errors
GLENN: I have hesitated on telling you what things -- what is actually going on, down on the ground in Ukraine.
We didn't really talk about that last week, because I'm not sure who to believe.
I think our press is so skewed, and I know the Russians, so skewed. So what is the truth?
Well, we have Jason Buttrill with us. Who has some sources. On the ground, in Ukraine.
Mainly because we've done so much work in Ukraine, in the last couple of -- in the last couple of years. That we -- we know some people.
And he's got also some other context as well.
Tell me what's going on, Jason.
JASON: Fairly catastrophic. I won't say catastrophic. It was a bad weekend for the Russian military.
And it's been just a bad invasion period. A lot of the reports, and you hit on it. Is, you can't trust a lot of what you see, from both sides.
GLENN: Both sides. Good or bad.
JASON: But all evidence now, is showing that Russia probably expected this to be a 72-hour frame. The initial troops, that Russia sent in, are paratroopers. Which are basically glorified riot police.
And they were decimated. Most of them were decimated on entering into the country.
I don't have actual casualty counts on either side. Because they're so wildly skewed on both sides. Probably look at what each side is saying, and then take a middle number, and that's probably what it was. But even that number is not good for Russia.
A lot of the equipment that is getting either destroyed or captured, they also have riot equipment.
Like shields, batons, stuff like that.
So Russia clearly thought, this was, hey. Three days maximum.
We'll go in. The population will capitulate or turn to us. And this will turn into more of an occupation, without firing many shots.
Very wrong. Multiple aircraft were shot down this weekend. That just caps off over the past week and a half. Several aircraft. Helicopters, fixed-wing aircraft had been shot down on the Russian side.
For the most part, their operations are stalling on the ground. Because they don't have the logistical capability at the moment, to take care of anything.
They don't have fuel. They don't have food, water. Things like that are very scarce on the ground. Which shows, they were completely unprepared. This is not a good invasion.
Which, you might want to say, okay. That's a great thing. But if you look at Russian strategy. If you look at Aleppo. The siege of Aleppo. The siege of Grozny, during the second Chechnyan War.
When these things stall, they move to severe bombing, indiscriminate bombing. Cluster bombing.
GLENN: We think the cluster bombing in the cities already.
They were doing that last week. Which you don't do.
Isn't that against the Geneva convention?
JASON: Yes. But the Russians do it. And they get away with it.
GLENN: So now the news is this morning, that they have circled all these cities. Or a lot of the big cities in Ukraine.
That is what they do right before they just start bombing the snot out of cities, isn't it?
JASON: Yeah. And they haven't completed encircling many of these.
It appears that way. And a lot have reported and showing these large clusters of Ukraine, that are under Russian control. That's not entirely the truth from what I'm seeing.
Russia has pushed into Ukraine. They're on major roadways. But they're not really occupying the surrounding territory.
For one of the reasons, right now, it's very, very -- rainy, muddy. It's hard to move some of these vehicles, across this.
Again, it doesn't seem like they were prepared for this. The Russians. So even the territory they have. It's not exactly, what I would call an occupation. You know, they're not really occupying those areas.
GLENN: We're seeing the Russians move now, in force. Really, and having to have some sort of offense and defense.
They don't seem very impressive.
JASON: Oh, no. Most of them appear -- they don't seem like professional soldiers, to me.
GLENN: Right. Right.
What happened to the mighty Soviet Army.
JASON: It's almost like MacArthur was right, if this was the capability. We should have gone through. And gotten this over from the beginning right after World War II. Russia hasn't fought a war like this. If you look at the United States, we've been fighting a war like this for 20 years.
It's very complicated.
Combined arms. When you combine artillery, troops on the ground, aircraft in the air, it's complicated. The United States military is the best in the world the at it. I don't know if they thought, hey. We'll adopt these tactics. We'll go in, and it will be done.
But clearly this is the evidence. They're not very capable at this warfare.
GLENN: So what does that mean? You put Putin in a corner. What does that mean?
JASON: Yeah. Not good for the people in Ukraine. If you want to compare what it's going to look at. Look at what they did in Aleppo. Look what they did --
GLENN: The world won't stand for that.
Yes. They said, well, what about Syria? Syria is not about race or anything else.
It's about, the Middle East has always been on fire.
It's a Dumpster fire. And you never know how to help, or if it will help. You're always on the wrong side. That's why America didn't look at Syria.
America barely looked at -- at the Christians in the area.
GLENN: You know, we just didn't do anything to help the Christians in the area. So it's not because of a religion or a race. It's because it's a Dumpster fire.
GLENN: This has been a stable, westernized country. Completely corrupt. But a stable westernized country.
So, yeah. We are looking at it.
And I don't think the -- the world will stand for him just shelling cities.
JASON: No. We were talking off-air. Where has the Russian Air Force been on this?
And I think a big reason why he hasn't probably bombed the heck out of some of these cities with his massive Air Force is because, the world will not stand for this happening, to, you know, a more western European country.
When he just unleashes, like he did in Aleppo or Grozny. When cluster bombs are hitting Kyiv, that's when the world is going to be like, okay. You've gone far enough. The question then is: How far does the West get involved here? Which is scary.
GLENN: Okay. So let me play cut two. This is over the weekend. This is Blinken.
VOICE: What more can the United States do here, if for instance, the Polish government, a NATO member wants to send fighter jets. Does that get a green light from the US, or are you afraid that will escalate tension?
VOICE: No. That gets a green light.
In fact, we're talking with our polish friends right now. About what we might be able to do to backfill their needs. If they choose to provide these fighter jets to the Ukrainians. What can we do? How can we help to make sure they get something to backfill the planes they're handing over to the Ukrainians. We're in very active discussions with them about that.
Look, I've been in Europe, the last couple of days. Working closely with our allies and partners. That NATO, the European Union, the G7 countries, and all of us together, are continuing to take steps to increase the pressure on Russia through additional sanctions. All of which are very actively under discussion.
And will be implemented in the coming days. As well as, taking further steps to give the Ukrainians what they need to defend themselves against the Russian aggression.
GLENN: Okay. So this seems like a good thing. Explain how scary that is.
JASON: Well, NATO supplied fighter jets. That's kind of another level right there, coming from Poland.
They are bold. I think it was MiG-29s, that they were considering. Remember, Top Gun, MiG-28s. That was the '80s.
But yeah. So this is still an escalation.
And it's got the earmarks of your typical Cold War battle. Whether it's the U.S. in Vietnam.
The Chinese and the Soviets wouldn't get involved. They would supply Russians to the Vietnamese. Very similar. North Korea. Same thing. This is how -- and Afghanistan.
Put that one out too. But this is a major regression. And it's got all the symptoms, or the -- you know, the same things that happened during the Cold War. Now, the question now is: During Vietnam, we knew this was going on.
The United States wasn't on the verge of collapse.
How -- you know, Russia can't sustain this, right?
They cannot continue to let all these weapons go into Ukraine, embarrassing Putin. While at the same time, you know, an economic WMD is now being unleashed on Russia.
So he's going to have civil problems. His people are going to rise up. We're not going to see that probably. Because TikTok, all these Russian media outlets, Facebook, Twitter, are now shut off in Russia.
Which is a tragedy, really. But we're not going to see how they're reacting. But they're not going to react well.
GLENN: So Visa and MasterCard, over the weekend said they're not going to process anything in Russia. Which Russia immediately turned to China. And said, fine, we'll use their Visa and MasterCard. But this is targeting the civilians. Which we've never, ever, ever done before.
It was sanctions. We always say, we are targeting the regime. We're targeting the country.
We don't target the individuals.
STU: My understanding too, that the cards will work. Russian-issued visas will work in Russia. So they can still buy basic supplies with these cards. They just can't buy anything international.
GLENN: So it's remarkable to me, that nobody is noticing the number of companies that are involved in this.
This has never been seen before. And everybody is saying, this is great. And screaming for the oil to be shut off from -- from -- Russia.
But could I just point out, we don't have the oil.
If we want it to shut off. We need to say, open up our own oil and gas resources.
We can't afford to shut this off.
Well, it's only 10 percent.
You want another 10 percent on top?
This is -- this is death for the United States.
We are, right now, negotiating with Iran and Venezuela!
Why would we enrich those two countries?
Look, I know the global warming bullcrap. I know all these people are like, well, the planet is going to die.
Well, you know what, I know the radicals. The real radicals believe that we should just -- we need to shut down more than we did, at COVID-19.
That's death for millions of people, all around the globe.
Literally, that will mean millions will die all around the world.
We cannot shut down all of our fossil fuels at this point.
Can't do it.
I would understand if the president who disagrees with me, came out and said, look, for the next nine months, or however long this thing drags on, we are going to open our pipelines.
We are going to fund our -- you know, the exons of the world. We're going to start going back and taking the natural gas out.
And shipping it. We're doing it. Because we have to.
Or we'll kill the nation.
Now, I'm going back. And I'm shutting it all off. Again, in whenever. Whatever it is.
People would understand that. Reasonable people. The only people that wouldn't understand it, are the Marxists that want to destroy us anyway.
It makes no sense. None.
Why would we be enriching Venezuela, and Iran?
Instead of taking care of business ourself.
That should be the number one call. I want the oil to stop from Russia. But I want the oil to be replaced with American oil and gas. Period.