During his first-ever State of the Union speech on Tuesday night, President Joe Biden opened by addressing the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine, but made an unexpected gaffe when he mixed up what country Russia was actually invading.
While pledging the support of the United States to the beleaguered citizens of Ukraine – who are in the midst of the seventh day of Russia’s devastating invasion of their country – Biden accidently referred to Ukrainians as Iranians.
“Putin may circle Kyiv with tanks, but he’ll never gain the hearts and souls of the Iranian people,” Biden said.[Listen to this Statement at 15:02]
Seated behind Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris can be seen mouthing a word right after Biden’s error; it is not known what word Harris was mouthing, but many on social media weighed in, believing that she was silently correcting the President by whispering “Ukrainian.”
Biden noted in his speech that Putin had “badly miscalculated” the strength and resolve of the people of Ukraine.
“Six days ago, Russia’s Vladimir Putin sought to shake the foundations of the free world thinking he could make it bend to his menacing ways. But he badly miscalculated,” Biden said. “He thought he could roll into Ukraine and the world would roll over. Instead he met a wall of strength he never anticipated or imagined. He met the Ukrainian people.”
The President also noted the severe sanctions that the United States and its European allies had imposed upon Russia, and warned President Vladimir Putin that the worst was yet to come.
“Throughout our history we’ve learned this lesson when dictators do not pay a price for their aggression they cause more chaos,” he added. “[Putin] has no idea what’s coming.”