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Joe Biden Appears To Mistake Ukrainians For ‘The Iranian People’ In Union Speech

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Joe Biden Appears To Mistake Ukrainians For ‘The Iranian People’ In Union Speech

Joe Biden found himself in the spotlight online after he appeared to refer to Ukrainians as 'the Iranian people' during his State of the Union speech.

Millions of people tuned in to watch Biden give his annual State of the Union address on Tuesday, March 1, with the focus placed heavily on the situation in Ukraine after Vladimir Putin launched an invasion last week.

Speaking almost a week after Russian troops crossed the border, Biden praised the bravery of Ukrainians who have fought to defend their homes, acknowledged the efforts of countries that have imposed sanctions against Russia and said Putin must 'pay a price', but it was one comment in particular that internet users have honed in on.

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During the speech, the US president appeared to say that while 'Putin may circle Kyiv with tanks', he would 'never gain the hearts and souls of the Iranian people'.

Behind him, Vice President Kamala Harris appeared to acknowledge the apparent mistake as she could be seen mouthing something which looked like 'Ukrainians', perhaps in a small effort to correct Biden's blunder.

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The president, however, continued on to say, 'He’ll never, he’ll never extinguish their love of freedom. And he will never, never weaken the resolve of the free world.'

Neither Biden nor the White House appear to have acknowledged the apparent slip of the tongue since the speech, but it was quickly picked up and spread online, with some claiming the mistake highlighted Biden's age or suggested a decline in mental sharpness.

Other social media users, however, have stood up for Biden and argued people should 'not make a thing of it'. Biden has famously overcome a stammer, and has given talks to the Stuttering Foundation Of America to help others with similar conditions and helping numerous others overcome their own stutter.

Incorrectly referring to those in Ukraine as 'Iranian' was not a theme throughout the speech, and the president did use the correct term a number of times.

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He said: '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. He thought he could roll into Ukraine and the world would roll over. Instead he met a wall of strength he never imagined. He met the Ukrainian people. From President Zelenskyy to every Ukrainian, their fearlessness, their courage, their determination, inspires the world.'

As well as addressing the situation in Ukraine, Biden's speech touched on the increasing cost of living and his $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill.

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Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: News, Joe Biden, Politics, US News, Ukraine, Viral

Emily Brown
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