Joe Biden’s gaffe may have inadvertently revealed the truth about his Ukraine policy

It was 28 minutes into Joe Biden’s press conference when the gaffe came - and it was a jaw-dropper. Especially if you were watching in Kyiv or the Kremlin.

The US President appeared to say that, if Vladimir Putin were to make only a “minor incursion” into Ukraine, then Russia would not face devastating sanctions.

His exact words were: “Russia will be held accountable if it invades. And it depends on what it does. It’s one thing if it’s a minor incursion and we (in Nato) end up having to fight about what to do and what to not do, etcetera.

“But if they actually do what they’re capable of doing, it is going to be a disaster for Russia if they further invade Ukraine.”

The comment whizzed around the world and, as the implications of what he had said sank in, a journalist read it back to him.

Was Mr Biden giving “permission” for a “minor incursion” by Russia into Ukraine, the journalist asked.

Mr Biden laughed and said: “Good question. It did sound (like) that, didn’t it…”