politics

Bill Ackman Says U.S. Military Intervention May Be Needed as Russia-Ukraine Conflict Unfolds

Adam Jeffery | CNBC

Investor Bill Ackman said Monday the U.S. should consider military intervention in defense of Ukraine as Russian forces continue to advance into the country from multiple directions.

In a series of tweets to more than 400,000 followers, the founder and CEO of Pershing Square Capital Management urged President Joe Biden to start considering taking actions beyond economic sanctions if the conflict doesn't resolve.

"I hope Russia stops this onslaught, but I don't see how Putin saves face. We need to be prepared for what comes next which means we need to start thinking about intervening military," Ackman said in the Twitter thread. "Isn't it time we set a real red line?"

"We can't sit back and allow hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians and perhaps millions to die. I don't want to live in that world and you don't either. @POTUS, it is in your hands. You can fix the errors of the past and protect our future. With all due respect Mr. President, the time is now," Ackman said.

The Biden administration has announced sanctions against Russia's central bank, the National Wealth Fund of the Russian Federation and Russia's Ministry of Finance, moves that effectively prohibit Americans from doing any business with the entities. The action will also freeze assets of the Russian central bank in the United States.

In the latest development, a Ukrainian delegation has arrived near the border with Belarus to hold talks with Russian officials. Ukraine's armed forces continue to hold off Russian troops, defending and retaining control of key cities, and slowing Russia's advance on Kyiv.

Ackman later moved to clarify his earlier remarks, saying he wasn't proposing U.S. troops on the ground as soon as possible.

"I am not advocating U.S. boots on the ground today. Putin has threatened the nuclear option," Ackman wrote in a separate post. "We need to set a red line on the use of nuclear weapons to deter their use. If the unthinkable happens, I see no alternative to our entering the war."

The White House told CNBC the administration continues to provide Ukraine with security assistance to help it defend its country.

"Deliveries of U.S. security assistance to help the Ukrainian military defend their country are ongoing and have been arriving regularly. And we are working with Allies to facilitate the transfer of U.S.-made military equipment from their inventories to Ukraine," a White House spokesperson said.

Clarification: This article has been updated to clarify that the sanctions announced Monday will freeze assets of the Russian central bank in the United States.

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