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tv   Anderson Cooper 360  CNN  February 23, 2022 5:00pm-6:00pm PST

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the deputy mayor tells me it's a place people can come if they're away from home and there's a bomb he said or street provocations as part of some sort of russian onslaught. today we went to the crypt. that's what's going to serve as the shelter. and i mean the word crypt obviously conveys a lot, right? this particular crypt is 400 years old. we had to crawl to get into parts of it. the interior spaces were small, claustrophobic. there was actually a coffin in one of the largest spaces. and i kept thinking, you know, if you're in here as a shelter, you wouldn't even have the lights either. it was another sobering reminder of what the people here are living with every day, and tonight this hour in these early hours as this breaking story develops. and our breaking coverage continues now with "ac 360." good evening. with this country now under a state of emergency, under a cyber attack and surrounded on three sides by russian troops
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ukraine's president made a direct appeal tonight to the russian people, speaking after midnight president zuelenskyy. >> translator: there were over 2,000 kilometers of common border between us. your army is along that border now. almost 200,000 soldiers, thousands of military vehicles. your leadership proof for them to take a step further to the territory of another country. this step can become a great beginning and can become the beginning of a great war in the european continent. >> president zelenskyy went onto say he tried to reach vladimir putin by phone today but got silence instead. that alone speaks loudly as does the break his speech represents after down-playing the threat the biden administration and others have been warning was imminent, a warning that got louder today. >> what we see is that russian
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forces continue to assemble closer to the border and put themselves in -- in advance stage of readiness to act, to conduct military action in ukraine. again, virtually any time now. we believe that they are -- they are ready. i'll just put it -- leave it at that. they're ready. >> we believe they're ready, he's saying. and publicly available satellite imagery showing a number of new russian deployments. these field units and military convoys approximately 9 miles east of the border with ukraine, just north of kharkiv, which is the second largest city of ukraine. late tonight russia shutdown
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three airports. as we mention cyber attacks are already under way. culprits not officially known yet. key ukrainian government websites are now down. and the ukrainian defense ministry is reporting dozens more cease-fire in the break away regions with russian leaders saying the leaders of the two russian backed so-called republics are asking moskow for military assistance against what they describe as ukrainian aggression. with all that and more unfolding we learned a few moments ago the u.n. security council is going to hold an emergency meeting scheduled for 9:30 eastern time tonight. that's about an hour and a half from now. we're bringing all of it to you. kaitlan collins at the white house, cnn's jim sciutto in ukraine. kaitlan, let's start with you. what is the white house saying about the apparent change in tone from ukrainian president zelenskyy? >> they're watching it very closely because of course this is a white house that has often had to balance ukrainian
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officials who say one thing in public and maybe something else in private, noting that zelenskyy throughout this has russia has continued to build up these forces has multiple audiences he is juggling here. anderson, what they've noticed in the last 24 hours is quite a shift in tone when it comes to the ukrainian government. and what you're hearing from the ukrainian president because of course they've declared this state of emergency. they've mobilized their military reserves. they're told their citizens ukrainian citizens who are in russia, they need to leave immediately. and then this speech tonight from zelenskyy himself, which most of it conducted in russian. that was intentional. and also striking as they were monitoring in washington about the gravity of this situation because this is leader you've heard in recent weeks saying the ukrainian officials believe the west was overhyping the word of an attack, using the word imminent repeatedly.
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and now you see zelenskyy speak so gravely about the situation facing them. >> cluarissa, you are in kharki and president zelenskyy talked about that city saying it would be potentially a prime and early target for russian forces. >> that's right, anderson. and by the way, president putin also mentioned it in that 57-minute speech he gave just the other day. he talked about how potentially they would be able to fly missiles from here to moskow in just a matter of minutes, and he mentioned kharkiv by name. at the moment this feels like a city or country just holding its breath. that shift in tone from president zelenskyy is truly -- well, you really feel it here when you've been listening day in and day out, and now suddenly it feels like a very different
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moment. we actually drove here today. we passed a large convoy of ukrainian military vehicles. when it came to getting into the city of kharkiv here, there was a checkpoint to make sure who was coming in and who was going out. and as you said those marxr satellite images, anderson, are showing some really disturbing trends. just on the other side of the border, we're just over 20 miles or so from that border, and 10 miles beyond that they're seeing troops and sort of unit-sized formations starting to break off. and so the concern is we've been talking about imminent now for days, for weeks even. but i would say just from a purely subjective point of view for the first time since i've been covering this story it really does now feel like it could be imminent. that's not to say it's definitely going to happen, but we heard, again, president zelenskyy saying anything right now, the smallest thing could potentially trigger a russian invasion.
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and certainly all the pieces of the puzzle seem to be falling into place, which is why this feels like a very different city and a very different country than it did even just a few days ago, anderson. >> and clarissa, we just put up a map of ukraine and kharkiv. you can see how close it is to the eastern -- in eastern ukraine, how close it is to the russian border. i mean, is the city -- are there checkpoints throughout the city? are there bomb shelters? are there -- what is it like there right now? >> so tlrz -- well, right now as you can probably see it's very quiet. it's the middle of the night. that's not entirely surprising. there is a public bomb shelter not too far from here. i think they're very much hoping they won't have to use it. but it's an ominous sign when the russians suddenly announce they're closing certain parts of the airspace to civilian aircraft in the northeast area right where we are basically, along this border area between
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russia and ukraine. and, you know, this is -- this is not a country that has been doing the same sort of trench warfare, this part of the country i should say as it has in other parts like the donbas where you see that front line activity continue. this is thriving city of young people, and it's just astonishing, frankly, to actually imagine some kind of military incursion unfolding here. now, everybody of course is hoping that won't be the case, that this crisis will be averted. but as i said before it really does feel like a moment where everybody is kind of holding their breath and waiting to see what the next hours, days bring. >> as a long time observer how do you interpret president zelenskyy saying he tried to call president putin and the call went unanswered? >> there may be possible
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answers. one maybe president putin doesn't want to talk to him because he hasn't made up his mind. and he's always paying attention to legalisms and his interpretation of legal. and he considers the ukrainian government and zelenskyy illegitimate because he mind say back in 2014 i remember you and i were there that that was a coup. and since that was a coup, quote, in his mind that means the government is alijuillegiti therefore you shouldn't talk to them. he had time to take letters from those break away regions, and they were letters appealing to president putin to help, to come to their aid because the military aggression was the phrase by the ukrainians is now at fever pitch, and they need protection. and i think what you're seeing right now is setting the --
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actually driving the case, making the case and the pretext for some type of action. i'll just add one more quote from russia's u.n. ambassador who also said the troops that russia has in the donbas region are, he said, enforcing the cease-fire. and then he had this ominous phrase that anyone who violates that cease-fire we won't go easy on you. it will cost you. >> jim, you now are in western part of ukraine. it's important to point out -- you see this from the vantage point of the country where you are. it's not just the troops amassing along the russian border with ukraine but you have russian troops in belarus, which is straighter shot and much quicker shot to kharkiv if they went over the border. >> as it's been described to me by senior military u.s. officials some three quarters of russia's entire conventional
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force when you think in terms of armor, air defense systems, aircraft, this is russia trying to surround this place and at least giving the russian president options to crush it from three sides, to do this, to mount this full-scale invasion we heard described by u.s. officials this evening. and i've also been told by senior u.s. military officials that ukraine's military while committed to defending the country is grossly outnumbered by many multiples. outmanned, outgunned, outarmored. a fraction of the aircraft that russia has, nothing to -- no sort of air defense systems that could hold off a serious air assault from russia. russia is aware of that. over the past several weeks and months the u.s. has been supplying them. nato allies have been supplying the uyakrainian military with anti-tank weapons, shoulder fire missiles to help not even the
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fight but make it not easy a fight. to raise the cost, really is the goal here of the russian military. but it doesn't make it close to a level playing field. that's a hard fact of what russia is capable of if it unleashes the full might of the russian military on ukraine in the coming days as you've heard from u.s. officials they now expect. and i want to give you a vision of the size of that force. because we've heard it talked about. we don't often get to see it up close. this video of a collection of tanks, armored personnel carriers just across the border where clarissa is, kharkiv, just the numbers of the force that is now within miles of the ukrainian border and in attack positions tonight is just daunting. it's sad to see. it's sad to see in europe in the year 2022. >> yeah. it's extraordinary to see. clarissa, does the ukrainian government have any realistic options left to prevent any kind
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of -- i mean, they're just at their mercy basically with vladimir putin whatever he wants to do at this stage. >> i mean, this is question i've been sort of asking myself constantly throughout this process is where's the exit ramp? how do you de-escalate? is there some concession that the ukrainians could make that president putin would accept? and in the beginning i think there were some, but understandably the ukrainians weren't willing to make them. now we're at a stage i genuinely don't know even if the ukrainian leadership was to turn around and say we will make a declaration we're not going to join nato, would that be enough for president putin? because when i listened to that speech -- and it really, it sent like a shiver down my spine. it was chilling because not only does he negate the idea of ukraine having sovereignty, of ukraine's right to statehood or self-determination, but he also -- he just seemed so set in
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this mind-set of carrying out what, you know, he has laid the groundwork now for. it did not seem to me like someone who was still open to the idea of diplomacy, who still might accept some conciliatory approach. it seemed to me that he was paving the way for this is what's going to happen, and he used this phrase "decominization." and we'll show you what decommunization really looks like, which again is so ominous, this idea of really seeking essentially to completely neutralize ukraine. so i just don't know there's anything that the ukrainians could offer at this stage that would avert this catastrophe. it's just not clear. >> thank you. please take care. joining us now william cohn who served as defense secretary in the clinton administration.
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the ukrainian foreign minister called this the largest security cries in europe since the second world war and said the continuation of the crisis would, quote, throw us back to the darkest times of the 20th century. do you agree with that comparison? and what -- what are we watching now happening here on the brink? >> we're watching the possibility of realtime viewing. he has choices. he can do it swiftly moving into one city perhaps trying to decapitate the leadership. certainly president zelenskyy, he could start a bombing campaign which could kill thousands of innocent people. the question is he rational. in a situation like this where you have innocent people who
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pose no threat to russia, for him to unleash this kind of firepower with the predictable consequences of the death toll it could take, causing to question his rationality at this point. if president zelenskyy was willing to call him saying perhaps i'll sign this document you want, if that's what it's take to save my people. so i think the decision has been made. impose all the sanctions because he's not going to be deterred, but he needs to feel some pain, and the longer he feels it the better it's going to be in the long-term. but i think we don't have any choice at this point. impose whatever we can including kicking him out of the g20. he's out of the g8. anything to isolate him and put on his brow the curse of kings because that's what he's doing. he's about to kill thousands of innocent people. >> do you think the u.s. should go farther than it has or the biden administration should go
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further than it has in terms of sanctions rather than a kind of escalating scale of sanctions depending how far he goes into ukraine. it should be everything at the u.s. disposal in terms of sanctions now? >> at this point i do. i think we have to be careful what president biden said initially. it depends how much he goes into ukraine. no. it shouldn't depend how much he goes into ukraine. he's taken two provinces now. a fig leaf to cover naked lies in terms of those dume that have been sent in and signed. so i think at this point it's pretty clear. here's my problem. if he starts this war, starting a war in a dry place so to speak can setoff a wildfire. this could spill over into the other regions where we are whether it's in poland, romania, elsewhere in europe. and secondly, if he starts seeing bodies coming home as a result of what we have supplied the ukrainians, i think he's
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going to look elsewhere to cause problems for the united states wherever he can. so i think we have to be on high alert in terms of the menace that he poses not only to ukraine but to all of the western countries in terms of what his desire is right now. >> secretary cohen, i appreciate your perspective on this. it's so important at a time like this. thank you. coming up next, a closer look what's motivating vladimir putin. we'll be joined by former cia chief of operations as well as former national director of intelligence jam clapper. i guess the big question is vladimir putin in the world of political science they call rational actors? is he making a decision in terms of the rational interests of the russian state or something else about his personality. later chairman schiff on his take and what secretary cohen about putting all the sanctions in place now. we'll see what adam schiff says about that ahead. any year, any condition.
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we are just getting some more breaking news in right now, and it's potentially very significant. i want to remind you american officials and other european officials have repeatedly warned any russian military action might begin with some sort of false pretext. with that in mind russian state media is now reporting -- this is new coming in --. russian state media now reporting ukrainian security forces have begun shelling the eastern city of donetsk. that is the claim being made by russian mead mu. we obviously can't independently verify this. first of all, can you just -- these reports by russian media about explosions in donetsk, and it's from russian media, and we want to stress the very real possibility this is part of a pretext. but we can't independently confirm what's happening in
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donetsk. can you show us where that is and what it might mean? >> what we're talking about the reports you just read are in this area and this area. clearly this is the area that the separatists have been in. there are russian forces -- let's be frank. there are russian forces already in there, and they've been there for eight years in many cases leading the separatist forces and supporting the separatist forces. so any additional movement of russian forces into there has probably already occurred, and it probably already occurred without a shot being fired, so it's bolstering that presence. so that's that initial report. also, anderson, what's really important where clarissa is this evening, kharkiv right here, there is a lot of imagery and video of activity in this area. and you've reported that wonderfully. let's look at the graphic here very closely. if these forces were given the word to cross is border, they
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could come into kharkiv. and realize this is a city of 1.5 million folks, which means there are rail networks. there are roads. there is the ability to move heavy equipment. so if these forces came into kharkiv, that would give the russian commander an option, an option to come this way if the fight is here and went across the border, he could now put ukrainian forces that are right in here in a vice of forces here and forces here. but additionally of movement here. and i don't mean to mess up the map too much, but here he has an option if this is something he wanted to do and head in the direction of kyiv. >> we should also point out there are russian forces on three sides of ukraine. it's not just in russia and the crimea region. it's belarus as well. >> oh, absolutely. forces are up here. in fact, there is a new hospital facility that's been identified up here, an airfield with the --
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a number of maneuver capabilities located, again, proximity to kyiv. what's of interest is the chernobyl exclusion zones right there, so you're pushing a bunch of soldiers through a nuclear disaster site. that's a health care in itself. and also as we've been reporting forces all along here, other great video and imagery, commercial imagery we've been able to obtain is a lot of activity down here, again moving forces in the direction of the donbas and these two separatist regions. bairld, what we could also see if the push is now across into this area and to further cut this off, if there were forces here what i just described provides a protection if the order was given to do that. if this were the case you'd now have crimea connected with a land bridge here. now russia has access to crimea and certainly the black sea
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completely uninterpreted. >> that's what makes the situation so difficult at this stage is this is all in the mind of vladimir putin what he wants to do, how he wants to carve this up and what decisions he is going to make and it's a pretty close circle it seems that know exactly his plans. i want to go back to clarissa ward in kharkiv in ukraine. again, such a short distance from the ukrainian border to the city where you are. i'm just wondering what you made of what general marks was saying about the options russian forces have in front of them. >> yeah, i mean it certainly doesn't appear to bode well, anderson, and sounds frankly ominous. what's striking to see, though, there haven't been any evacuations, any major
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announcements. here things do seem to be for the moment pretty calm. now, when i say calm i don't mean relaxed. it definitely feels tense and as i mentioned to you before when we're driving into the city, there's checkpoints. checked our identification, wanted to know why we were going here. there's also a checkpoint for people leaving the area. we didn't see anyone trying to leave, but it was already pretty late at night. i think it'll be interesting to see what happens tomorrow morning, whether there's some kind of announcement urging people to leave. the attitude up until this point really from the ukrainian government, anderson, as you were saying has really been to try to keep people calm, stop people from panicking. there's been a rift even at times between ukraine's leadership and the u.s. leadership in terms of the tone and messaging if you like about this crisis. for so long we heard president volodymyr zelenskyy insisting an
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all-out invasion wasn't even possible. and yet the speech you just heard from him this evening was a remarkably different tone. this almost seemed to be a last ditch appeal to the people of russia, trying to circumvent. he shifted into russian saying, listen, your leadership has approved for nearly 200,000 forces to take a step across this border into the territory of a another country. frankly, it's unlikely most russians will even hear that speech, and its even less likely president putin is going to change his plans as a result of that speech. and so for the 1.4 roughly million people living here this feels like a pretty ominous time. as i said you don't see evidence of panic. you can see the streets behind me are very quiet. it's the middle of the night. most people are asleep, but i'm not sure how easily people are resting at the moment after hearing that from their
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president, and everything they're hearing coming from the international community. it certainly has more of an air of inevitably about it than it has up until this point. that doesn't mean it's going to happen, but it certainly feels much lore likely than it has at any other point. >> it's fascinating to emoo you're in a city close to the border, which has been said by putin and zelenskyy, likely to be an early target. you mentioned two checkpoints. we've all been in cities that are anticipating an attack or under an attack, and, you know, everything is boarded up. there are sandbags in every street corner, armed civilians, you know, manning makeshift checkpoints. that's not what you're seeing in that city. >> and it's so funny, anderson, because, you know, i feel like as western journalists who have sort of descended upon ukraine, a lot of ukrainians have looked at us with kind of aastonishment
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like who are these people coming into our country and talking about how there's going to be this war because you didn't have the sense up until this point that they felt it or that they believed it. and i can't tell you how many people i talked to, you know, and sitting in cafes and saying it just doesn't make sense, why on earth would president putin actually launch an all out invasion of ukraine. no one could seem to understand the logic of it. and whether that's because the ukrainian leadership was deliberately playing this down or whether it's because they genuinely interpreted the intelligence in a different way, they thought perhaps this was a feint. and only now at this moment do we see that shift in rhetoric from the leadership. so there is a sense, yeah, people on the ground here, ukrainians, are sort of playing catch-up. i only felt a shift really after president putin made that peach and you started to see suddenly ukrainians saying, okay, this really might happen because this did not sound like the speech of a man who is interested in pursuing diplomacy.
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this sounded like the speech of a man for whom the occupation or invasion of ukraine was already a forgone conclusion. now i think you'll start to see more preparations, but i guess we'll be out there as far as it gets light and we'll see for ourselves. >> the question is logic what is driving vladimir putin? and that's what we're going to look at next. coming up next, to get a better idea what is motivating or might be motivating vladimir putin, whether he's a so-called rational act, whether making decisions based on logic we're going to be joined by two veteran russia watchers. that's next. stuff. we love stuff. and there's some really great stuff out there. but i doubt that any of us
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show up, however you can, for the foster kids who need it most— at another ominous development. additional ukrainian government websites are now down, at least eight including the foreign minister's website. joining us now retired air force lieutenant general james clapper, author of "facts and fears, hard truths from a life of intelligence." also with us steve hall. director clapper, i wonder what you make of the white house saying putin is supposedly improvising and adapting his plans after the u.s. made so
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much intelligence public over the last several weeks that he has a false flag operation and other things. do you think that's had an effect on the strategy about putin? >> well, i'm not sure i'd go that far. i think it's certainly been a distraction to him. it's been somewhat disruptive, but i think putin's mind is made up, and he might improvise as he goes. i think he'd do that anyway. that said, i completely support what the administration is doing and using intelligence, but we must contest against the russians in the information operations space. it remains to be seen how much impact that's had on his kiz making, which that's another subject. >> steve, it's interesting clarissa ward in kharkiv was saying a lot of the ukrainians she's talked to in the last couple of days are saying are in
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cafes saying it doesn't make any sense putin would do a full invasion, it's not logical. that goes back to the early days of political science classes where they talk about is somebody a rational actor? are they making decisions based on the best interests of their country? or are they not rational? what is putin? >> yeah, clarissa, made a really interesting observation there, and i think it gets in one sense to the heart of what we're talking about here, and that is the ukrainians after many, many years of being independent from the soviet union and from russia are much more western, and therefore we see their actions as rational. what vladimir putin is doing is rational to him and perhaps rational to other russians as well. and it just shows the sort of big difference that you have between a western oriented set of thoughts and then sort of the russian version. i agree with jim, there's no doubt that vladimir putin has made up his mind on this, and he has a lot of other decisions to
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make as to how he goes about this. but we can't ignore the fact there's been a cup of really small but interesting data points with regard to vladimir putin. he has been very isolated. of course we all because of the virus, but i think putin even more so. he had the public dressing down of his chief of intelligence, his sort of cia equivalent, which is extremely unusual. he's dressed down other people before, but to do it the way he did shows there's i think more going on than there oftentimes is with vladimir putin. of course you have the french president macron saying he sensed a different feel with vladimir putin. i think he's rational according to his logic and own sense of it. but it sometimes doesn't make sense in west as to what he's thinking. i can tell you inside of vladimir putin's head is a very, very difficult place to get even for the best intelligence services. >> director clapper, what cnn is reporting france's president macron told reporters and others
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after meeting with putin this last time he thinks putin has changed -- his word dates in the two years since they last met in person, and during the recent meeting putin appeared and this is a quote, stiffer and more isolated. >> well, and that observation by macron is borne out as well by the president of finland who had made a similar observation. you know, he's had a grievance eating at him for about 20 years and has made the decision i think to try to redraw the national security architecture of europe. this grievance of the suffering of russia -- and that is compounded by his isolation, his bureaucratic isolation for some 20 years in the position of power. and his physical isolation as steve mentioned because of the pandemic. he is a classic case, in my view, of the emper hath no
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clothes. and as we saw graphically the other day with the public humiliation of the intelligence service chief, he's not listened to anybody -- not listening to anybody and certainly not anybody that has bad news. >> so, steve, what do you see as the -- the goal for putin? i mean is it a remaking of -- of the map, of creating bigger buffer zones around russia trying to change the world order? >> yes, that's the big overall goal if he could have anything in the world that would be what he would wish for. what he's actually capable of doing in that regard will be interesting to see how far he gets. we've long known that vladimir putin is threatened first and foremost not by ukraine, but he's threatened by democracy, by the idea of democracy and the idea that a country that used to
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be not even a country, just a soviet republic. and according to his most recent rant the other night, not even worthy of considered a sovereign nation. the idea a country like that could turn its back on russia and instead push towards the west, wanting to join not just nato but wanting to join the eu, wanting to have increased trade ties, that is just anathema to putin, and he'll do everything he can to stop it. as we've seen before with the former soviet republic of georgia. so this his red line. he's not going to let these countries go. he just can't see it happening, and it's important for him to keep that buffer. >> steve hull, general clapper, appreciate it. thank you. up next a very busy night. more reporting from ukraine, a look at the front lines as the threat of war appears to be growing tonight. from paying your people from anynywhere to supporting your talent everywhere, we use data driven insights to design hr solutions and services
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again, our breaking news, more ukrainian government websites going down. three major airports have closed. russia shutting down airspace on the eastern border. also ukraine's president zelenskyy addressing the country. a nationwide state of emergency now in effect for his country tonight. right now we want to take you along the front lines. cnn's alex marquardt has that report. >> reporter: dirt roads that connect the ukrainian villages nearest to the front lines are meandderring covered in potholes and puddles. the empty landscape makes it easy to see the russia-backed
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separatist territory and to hear the deep rumble of artillery in the distance. along the line of contact just over a mile away one of the few remaining in this sparse empty village, which over the past week has been hit with waves of artillery fire, and the biggest spike in fighting in years. a farmhouse destroyed, its metal door cut by shrapnel. out in the field behind gives you a sense of how widespread it was. you can see here the randomness of this shelling, craters all over this field here, here and here. many of them as deep as i am tall. we're told that it was just over the course of only two days last week that 16 shells were fired at this field. despite the renewed violence he says he's not going anywhere.
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his son lives in separatist held land and has other family in russia . out here its mostly valery and his animals, pets and live stock. his friend alexi shows up to deliver some food, and tells us there's definitely more shelling to come, but he doesn't believe there will be a full-scale war. it is a confidence we have seen all over this country in part
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because people like valery and alexi have already seen so much fighting for past eight years, a confidence that will likely soon be tested. >> and alex joins us now. we're hearing the leaders of those break away republics have asked moskow now for help, for troops. what's the latest? >> reporter: yeah, anderson, the major concern is that president putin in recognizing these two break away republics didn't just recognize the land that they hold but the land that they're claiming, which is much bigger. and tonight we have the leaders of these two so-called break away republics who according to the kremlin have called on russia to help them. the phrasing they used is to repel aggression of the armed forces of ukraine. of course they have been accusing ukrainian forces of carrying out shelling against them over the course of the past few days. that is continuing tonight, according to state tv -- russian state tv.
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so they are asking moskow to help them defend themselves against this threat from kyiv. and, anderson, as you and others have noted president putin is so hung up on formality, on legalisms may want to use this, may see this as a as a pretext, as a justification to send his forces into the eastern part of the country, the forces he calls peace keepers. >> appreciate it. just ahead, president biden's next move. the chairman of the house intelligence committee joins us to discuss the possibility of future sanctions and how the u.s. will respond to a russian invasion.
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time line backed up by u.s. intelligence as well. joined by adam schiff, chairman of house intelligence committee. chairman schiff, i'm wondering what the latest information you have tonight about russian troop movement in and around ukraine and the plan for u.s., nato, and their allies in the region. >> the russians have amassed, i think, all the forces they need to fully invade the country. they've already begun that invasion. but they could very quickly move to the ukrainian capital of kyiv. you know, the ukrainians will put up resistance, but they'll be overwhelmed by the strength
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of russian forces. where i think it's going to get really ugly for the russians is overtime, as the ukrainians are likely to mount an insurgency campaign against them. but they have the resources they need. they have started what we would expect in terms of russian trade craft moving into ukraine to prepare the battlefield, cyber attacks, flooding social media with russian propaganda to undermine confidence in ukraine. so, they're doing what we would expect for a more fulsome invasion. >> what does this mean for the future of europe, for -- i mean, for the international order? >> well, it depends on whether we and our nato allies stick together and embark on an even more severe set of sanctions, which i fully believe and expect that we will at the munich conference i attended with the
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speaker. there was a high degree of solidarity among our nato allies. it's going to have to be really punitive. we're going to have to continue to provide ukraine with weapons. the rest of the world is watching, china with an eye toward whether it can get away with invading taiwan. the consequences globally, the consequences to the international rule space order could not be higher, which is why we have to make sure if putin goes forward with this invasion more fully than he has already that the costs to putin and russia are just crippling. >> i talked to former secretary william cohen, and he said he thought all the sanctions that we have at our disposal, the u.s. and europe has at their disposal, should be put into place now. do you agree? >> look, i would like to see it all put into place asap, both
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because i think it's necessary. but i don't see the point in waiting if we could get our allies to come along with us. i think that essentially putin has made up his mind and weo ought to again those as soon as possible. i would lean in, i think secretary cohen would, and move to improve and implement the most severe sanctions as soon as possible. >> what would the most severe sanction be? >> well, you know, it would be a permanent end to the nord stream pipeline. and i think we're already well on the way to that. sld be sanctioning not just the fifth largest bank and other banks, but the largest banks in russia. it would be separating them from the swift system of financial transactions, really crippling their ability to do business with the west. it would be expanding from the list of oligarchs we go after. it would be depriving them of
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technology they need to use in their defense systems. and i think importantly, going beyond the nord stream pipeline to diversifying energy sources for europe so that we can essentially shut off russian sales of gas, their real source of wealth to the west. and i think that would be the most crippling of all. >> congressman schiff, i appreciate your time tonight. thanks very much. >> thanks, anderson. things seem to be moving quickly on the ground. we'll be right back with more. financial picture. rl with the right b balance of risk and reward. so y you can enjoy more of...this. this is the planning effect. it's true - everyone gets a free new samsung galaxy s22 with a galaxy trade-in. any year, any condition. really!? even if my old phone looks like... this?!? ♪ dude! why?! how could you! it's ok, people! ...i've trained for this.
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stay with cnn for the latest from ukraine. i want to hand it over to wolf blitzer. >> thank you very much. we want to welcome our viewers here in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer, and this is cnn tonight. 4:00 a.m. right now in kyiv. ukraine tonight is under a nationwide state of emergency. the country remains on high alert, as the united states warns the russians are ready, ready for a full-scale, imminent invasion. ukraine's president zelenskyy told his nation tonight that russian leadership has approved an incursion. and he tried to call vladimir putin today but was met with ominous silence. we are now awaiting an emergency meeting of the united nations security council, an open session tonight convening at the request of ukraine. it's scheduled for half an hour or so from now, 9:30 p.m. eastern.