Return to Transcripts main page

Hala Gorani Tonight

Russia Warns It Could Take Full Control Of Major Cities; Ukraine Prime Minister Says Ukraine "Is On Fire;" U.S. Warns China Not To Help Russia Evade Sanctions; Pentagon: Russia Increasing Their Targets; China Lockdowns Impacting More Than 26 Million People; Chelsea Play First Home Game Since Abramovich Sanctions. Aired 3-4p ET

Aired March 14, 2022 - 15:00   ET



CHRISTINA MACFARLANE, CNN INTERNATIONAL HOST: Hello and welcome, I'm Christina Macfarlane in London. We're monitoring press briefings happening

at the White House and the Pentagon this hour. But we begin with the latest on the ground in Ukraine. Russia warns that it could storm major Ukrainian

cities and take full control as a fourth round of talks produces nothing but an agreement to talk again tomorrow.

Attacks are getting closer to the capital Kyiv. Ukraine says a residential building was hit in a suburb today killing one person and wounding six

others. The second largest city Kharkiv is already enduring an onslaught, and are warning Russian forces are firing constantly. Ukrainian leaders say

the world must do more to stop Vladimir Putin in Ukraine or risk a wider war. Ukraine's prime minister had these dire words when he virtually

addressed the Council of Europe.


DENYS SHMYHAL, PRIME MINISTER, UKRAINE (through translator): Ukraine is on fire. Hundreds of houses have been burnt, short of water, of light and of

heat for millions of our people. We need to join our efforts not only to protect, to defend Ukraine, but to defend all of Europe today. We need to

stop the aggression until a nuclear disaster comes in, until all of Europe is on fire.


MACFARLANE: Meantime, Russian-backed separatist forces accuse Ukraine of launching a missile strike in Donetsk, saying nearly two dozen people were

killed. A spokesman for Ukraine's military denies responsibility. Well, Kira Rudyk is a member of the Ukrainian parliament who has taken up arms to

protect Kyiv. A few hours ago, she tweeted "this is also Kyiv, it is getting closer and closer. We have trained for another two hours today.

We are ready to fight and give them hell, but there is nothing, nothing I can do to protect my home from this. This is why we need help from NATO."

And I'm pleased to say that Kira Rudyk joins me now live from the Ukrainian capital. Kira, good to see you again. We spoke last -- just last week

actually about how you have joined the military resistance there, how you have learned to shoot a gun to defend your capital. How prepared are the

people right now in Kyiv to defend the city with Russian forces closing in as we speak?

KIRA RUDYK, MEMBER OF UKRAINE PARLIAMENT: Hello, thank you so much for having me. So, we are getting prepared better and better every single day

because of the training, because of the organization capacity, because of people learning how to interact in between the teams, because of the plans

that we are putting in place. So the system is being built, and we are ready for the Russians to get in.

We are also ready for the Russians trying to seat us. So, we have half of the population of Kyiv have left and the rest is either ready or getting

ready to fight. We are building here a fortress, and so we will be able to fight Russians to the ground. What we cannot do and what will be extremely

hard to do is to get to this fight when we will be constantly under the bombarding. So, tonight was very heavy. It was like about -- well, air raid

sirens just starting 6:00 a.m.

It's five times more than we usually have during this time. So -- and you see the nine-story building, this is just like a 15-minute drive from where

I am located was destroyed by a Russian rocket, and a bus along with some other buildings nearby was also destroyed with the direct hit of the

Russian rocket. So, how is it possible and how can we protect ourselves? There is no way that we can do this without the additional support from


This is why we are pleading for different programs. We may not call it no fly zone if it's something that's so painful for everybody. Let's call it

differently, but we do need means to protect ourselves from the air. Otherwise, it will be very hard to use all this preparation, all this

energy, all the resources, all the fighting power that we have right now if we will be constantly under the airstrikes by Russia.


MACFARLANE: Yes, and we know that western allies and NATO have repeatedly rejected the idea that they would support a no-fly zone, saying that would

lead to an escalation in the crisis. But I want to ask you, Kira, what else do you need? What else can be done by allied forces to help you? You talk

about being militarily ready on the ground to meet those Russian forces. How much supplies -- how many supplies do you have? I mean, if the event

that it came to on the ground fighting, how long could you go before you need more intervention to assist?

RUDYK: So first of all, we are very grateful for all the supplies that we're getting right now. And obviously, during the war, there is no excess.

So, if you need everything and you need it now and you need more and more of it. And from my knowledge and from my understanding, there is a big

program that is on the way with the supplies and we are receiving the additional military supplies from the NATO countries.

However, it is not resolving their situation. So this is just Putin adding fuel up to and on growing fire. For us to be able to fight back, for us to

be able to end this war on Ukrainian terms and push the aggressor back, we will still need various means of support that will be more intense. It will

be more heavy weaponry that we can actually push Russians back. Right now, we are just like -- it seems like OK, you're fighting, well, here is some

more supplies so you can continue fighting well.


RUDYK: But the issue is that in general, they're pushing us back. So I am --


RUDYK: Saying, we as Ukrainians, we do have plans to fight him until the last person standing. My question is NATO, what is your plan?

MACFARLANE: We've also seen, Kira, the Russian forces kidnapping or strategically kidnapping two mayors in recent days in cities in Ukraine,

asserting pressure on cities to announce independent republics, and yet, Ukrainians are rallying under this intense pressure. From where you are in

Kyiv, how much communication, collaboration, do you have with those cities in the south who have reportedly or seemingly been cut off and isolated?

RUDYK: So, yes, we are in communication with the cities and their counsels, and there are cities where there is a humanitarian catastrophe,

obviously, and this is something that we are trying to get the humanitarian corridor as soon as possible and as intense as possible. However, in the

cities where Russians are trying to do this political who is just not working well. It shows you the level of the understanding of how the

democracy works.

They think that you can kidnap a mayor and replace it with a different person and it will work well. It does not. The democracy works differently.

They think that you can threaten the local council and the local council will vote for the separate -- for being a separate republic. So, you know

when they pressure the local council, they gather and they voted, but they voted to say that the [AUDIO GAP: 08:20-26] will be Ukraine, and they

didn't speak a word about Russia to their proposals and their pressure.


RUDYK: So, I'm super proud of our members of the local council.

MACFARLANE: OK, unfortunately, we're having a few technical difficulties there, but Kira, it is remarkable resistance as you've been saying. We wish

you the very best there on the ground, thank you so much for joining us this evening. All right, well, even in the context of war, there are some

stories that are utterly heartbreaking. This photo of a pregnant woman injured after the bombing of a maternity hospital in Mariupol last week

quickly became the defining image of this conflict. We're about to show you some new video of that attack, but must warn you, the images are graphic

and upsetting. You can see some --






MACFARLANE: As I was saying, you can see some of the women here being given first aid after the bombing. Among those inside, this expectant

mother now tragically we've learned that both she and her new born baby are now confirmed to have died. The surgeon who gave emergency treatment said

the child was born by caesarean section, showing no signs of life and that attempts at resuscitation failed on both the mother and baby. The next day,

they did not have time to get the woman's name before her husband and father came to retrieve her body.


Well, after being trapped without power or water, civilians have finally begun to leave Mariupol through a humanitarian corridor. That's been

confirmed by both the city's mayor and Russia's Defense Ministry. Southern city has been under relentless airstrikes by Russian troops for the past

few days with many evacuation routes mostly blocked off.

This is just a glimpse of some of the attacks. As filmed from the air on Sunday and while on the ground that day, one resident made a video of the

way the once thriving city has now become an eerie ghost town. They didn't reveal the name, but the footage is being widely shared online.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): The town of Mariupol, March 13th, the 18th day of the war, the town is occupied. There is no humanitarian aid

and will not be. The evacuation of the peaceful people is impossible, people who are in a devastating situation. Water, food, are coming to an

end. People are forced to break into shops in search for necessities including logs. It's minus 7 right now.

And here is what we see in every shop. Russian military vehicles and also from the People's Republic of Donetsk are not ashamed of airstrikes. The

town is under airstrikes and shelling from grads and mortars. There are thousands of victims among peaceful civilians in all parts of the city.

I've been on the left side, now I'm in Alychea(ph), it's like a meat- grinder here. We feel bitterness, desperation, this land has been soaked with this.

Russians came here under a reasonable in their view pretext, but they so despair, fear, bitterness. They have taken away our peace. They are killing

us. That's what's happening? The town has no electricity for 13 days, no heating, water and the world doesn't know what's happening here. This is

horror. Here is our good morning.


MACFARLANE: It really is just desperate, especially there in Mariupol. Let's go live now to out Scott McLean who joins us from Lviv in the west.

Scott, I actually want to get your perspective on the airstrike on the military race in the western part of the country, that, you know, has

really sent shock waves I think through a lot of the country because the west have been something of a safe haven for internally displaced people to

flee. Is the feeling today that, that is no longer the case because of that bombing?

SCOTT MCLEAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hey, Christina, yes, you are certainly right that hundreds of thousands of internally displaced people have

flocked to cities in western Ukraine because up until this point, and still to a large extent to this point, they have remained safe. You can still

walk around Lviv, it is still relatively normal. There are people out and about today eating at restaurants, walking around in the park, doing what

normal people do on any given day in an European city.

What is different, obviously, is that several times per day for the last few days, we are hearing air raid sirens. Now, since nothing has actually

dropped in the city of Lviv, it seems like there is somewhat of a desensitization that people have to these actual air raid sirens. But it

appears that, this strike over the weekend was a bit of a wake-up call, this was the closest strike that's taken place to Lviv since the conflict

began just about 25, 30 miles outside of the city, and only about 11 miles from the Polish border. This was the place that many figured Vladimir Putin

just was not willing to go.

It is dangerously close to NATO territory, it is also apparently the deadliest strike since the war began. The deadliest single strike since the

war began. And one potential reason why there were so many casualties on this military base, a place where you would very much think that they'd be

expecting this type of attacks to happen is because according to one witness who spoke with my colleague, they had all gone down to the shelter

and then at some point, when things seemed to be over, when the threat seemed to have passed, they went back to their positions and it was about

30 or 40 minutes later that those missiles actually landed when there was hardly anybody still left in the shelter.

So that's potentially one reason why these were so deadly. But again, Christina, the fear here is that if these -- if these attacks, if these

military strikes started getting closer and closer to these western cities and actually start hitting inside of them, then you may have a whole new

exodus of Ukrainians heading for the borders, heading outside of the country to safety.

MACFARLANE: All right, Scott McLean there live from Lviv. Thank you very much, Scott.


Well, the UN's High Commissioner for Refugees describes the number of people fleeing Ukraine as terrifying. The agency says more than 2.8 million

have crossed into neighboring countries since the conflict began and almost 2 million others have been forced from their homes inside Ukraine. Number

of those fleeing appears to be leveling off, but the commissioner says it's still the fastest growing refugee crisis in Europe since World War II.

Almost half the refugees coming out of Ukraine are crossing into Poland. CNN's Ed Lavandera is at the border for us. And as we've been saying, these

are unprecedented numbers. Tell us just what you've been seeing on the ground there today?

ED LAVANDERA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, we are inside the train station in Przemysl, Poland, which is one of the closest train stations and border

stops that many of these Ukrainian refugees will encounter as they try to escape Ukraine. This is an area of Poland that has seen probably the vast

majority of the refugees escaping from Ukraine. I spoke with the mayor of this city just a short while ago, and he said that in the initial days

after the war erupted, there were about 50 to 55,000 refugees coming through this city every day.

He says that number has settled to about 25,000 a day, but it is relentless and it doesn't appear that it's going to slow down any time soon. They are

bracing for more and more refugees to come through here. It is a dramatic scene. In fact, just a short while ago, the announcers here at the train

station announced that a train within the next hour would be arriving from Kharkiv, which is in the far eastern area of Ukraine, an area near the

Russian border that has been decimated by Russian soldiers and attacks there.

And that is a train that is making its way from there. So you can imagine the emotion that will be seen on the faces of these refugees arriving here

who have spent days traveling across the country. Virtually, everyone we speak to here at this station that has been coming from that far eastern

side of the country says that the journey to get to this very point here in Poland is taking several days. And in fact, one of the longer stretches of

that could very well be what is supposed to be a short train ride from here on the Polish-Ukrainian border to Lviv where so many Ukrainians have moved

to in the days since the war erupted.

And we have spoken with people who says that -- who say that, that train ride from Lviv to here which normally should take about two hours or so is

taking anywhere between 9, 10, 11 hours. So, it is really intense. But the journey is long and this is essentially a gateway to uncertainty. What

happens here is unclear for many people. What we are seeing is that refugees are landing here. They're finding temporary shelter for a day or

two, and then trying to figure out where to go next.

But the uncertainty comes, they don't know how long to plan for. They're going to be gone for weeks, months, and many people, Christina, that we

talked to, talk about their home in the past tense. Which is really striking and really speaks to the uncertainty tha they're facing in these


MACFARLANE: Absolutely. And this of course, just being the first port of call of many to come for a lot of those refugees. Ed, great to have you

there reporting for us. Thank you very much. Well, there are reports that Russia is turning to China to help on Ukraine, as top U.S. and Chinese

officials wrap up crucial talks in Rome. Both Moscow and Beijing are pushing back on the reports. We'll analyze China's stake in the war when we




MACFARLANE: The United States is warning China not to throw Russia a lifeline as the Kremlin struggles under the weight of international

sanctions. U.S. and Chinese delegations met today in Rome amid reports that Moscow has asked Beijing for economic and military assistance for its war

in Ukraine. Both China and Russia deny those reports. CNN White House reporter Natasha Bertrand is live in Brussels with more for us tonight.

And Natasha, we understand that the meeting between National Security adviser Jake Sullivan and a Chinese counterpart was an intense seven-hour

meeting. What, if anything, do we know came out of that meeting?

NATASHA BERTRAND, CNN WHITE HOUSE REPORTER: Seven hours long just reflecting how intense of these conversations have been and how important

it is for the U.S. to try to deter China from helping Russia in its invasion of Ukraine. Now, what we are told is that no real concessions kind

of came out of this discussion. No real deliverables. However, the U.S. did send a very clear message to China that there would be severe consequences

if they attempted to try to export any kind of material to Russia or try to support it in any way financially.

What we're told, though, coming out of this meeting is that there is some evidence that China has expressed a willingness to provide that political,

military and financial support to Russia amid this invasion of Ukraine. That was actually disclosed in a State Department memo that was sent to

allies in Europe and Asia, saying that they have seen that the Chinese are willing perhaps to look into doing this, perhaps to -- you know, express a

willingness to help Russia in this invasion.

But there is still importantly a lot of disagreement among top Chinese government leadership about whether this is the right thing to do, because

the economic consequences of course, would be extremely severe. And the U.S. has communicated that very clearly, and China relies a lot on its

economic relationships with the west. So obviously, Xi Jinping is very close to Vladimir Putin. But the government itself is divided at this point

over how much support they should actually provide to Russia.

MACFARLANE: Interesting. Divided. Natasha, thank you. I want to discuss all of this with my next guest who says China has already taken sides, and

it's not with the Ukrainians. Josh Rogin is columnist for "The Washington Post" and a CNN political analyst. Welcome to the show, Josh. You write --


MACFARLANE: Thank you. You write in your "Washington Post" article that China is a co-conspirator with Russia in Ukraine. So just explain why the

idea that China might be a constructive player on Ukraine is basically a complete fallacy.

ROGIN: Right. I think there is a desire inside the Chinese government to portray themselves as divided and conflicted about Vladimir Putin's

invasion of Ukraine. And to be sure, it's not a great thing for China's interest. But if you look, understand how the Chinese government works, you

realize that actually Xi Jinping has the sole hold on power, and actually, his actions show that Chinese government has been supporting Putin and the

invasion from the get-go.

They met at the Olympics, they signed a 5,000-word statement of friendship. According to reports, Xi Jinping asked Putin to delay --

MACFARLANE: Josh, I'm going to have to -- I'm sorry, I'm going to have to interject at the moment, Josh, because we just need to cut to the Pentagon

Press Secretary John Kirby speaking here with an update. Let's listen in.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There were no indications of such an effort, is the strike on the week end kind of --

JOHN KIRBY, PENTAGON PRESS SECRETARY: Again, we're not looking at this strike as an effort to go after the delivery of security systems to



I'm not going to talk about all the modalities of how we're continuing to find ways to help Ukraine defend itself. I think you guys can understand

that. And all I would tell you in answer to your question, your larger question is that we're -- we're going to continue to get as much security

assistance to the Ukrainians as fast as we can and in the most efficient, effective way. And there is lots of different ways that we're pursuing that

and I just don't think it's helpful certainly not to Ukrainians for us to be detailing that here from the podium.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But on the efforts by the Russians too, have you seen any indications that they're trying now to interfere with these --

KIRBY: All, I'll tell you is, we continue to have ways to get stuff into the hands of the Ukrainians, and again, I'm just going to leave it at that.

I'm not going to talk about Russians targeting and Russian operations, yes.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes sir, thank you. To go back to this strike on Lviv, do you consider that as a turning point in the war, the fact that

they start striking in the west or do you consider that as just signal to the west that we can do that if we want?

KIRBY: I don't think we would reduce something like this to calling it a signal. I mean, they used multiple cruise missiles here. Clearly, they had

their reasons for targeting that training facility. And it is a Ukrainian military training facility. I'll let them speak to their targeting

justifications. As for a turning point, no, so, I wouldn't think that we would consider this or the other strikes in western Ukraine as some sort of

turning point.

The Russians clearly are expanding some of their -- some of their target sets. That's obvious just from the fact that over the last couple of days

we've seen other targets hit in Ukraine. It doesn't change I think our general understanding that they continue to be frustrated by a very stiff

Ukrainian resistance and they are not making the kind of progress on the ground that we believe they thought they would be making by this point. Let

me try Lita(ph) again since we didn't make that work. Lita(ph), are you there?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, I'm here, sorry. Can you hear me? Can you hear me?

KIRBY: Yes, I got you.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: OK, I just want to expand a little bit on a couple of the questions. Is it getting difficult more broadly to get the security

assistance into Ukraine at all? And secondly, as this break had -- you have already moved -- so you've got the fight closer to the Polish border. Are

you hearing anything from Poland about requests for potentially more security assistance to them or more troops? And do you see any more of that

of any more troops, et cetera, going into Europe in the next week or so?

KIRBY: I don't have any additional troop movements to speak to, Lita(ph). As you all know, when we do have something like that to talk about, a

muscle movement, we'll do that. But I'm not -- I have no troop announcements to talk about today. We are in constant communication with

our Ukrainian counterparts about the types of assistance that they need, the defensive assistance that they need.

This is an ongoing interactive conversation that we're having with them. So I wouldn't go so far as to say that this particular set of strikes on that

particular military facility has led to some renewed calls for additional or different assistance. This is a conversation that we continue to have

with them. You saw that the president approved another $200 million drawdown package over the course of the weekend.

I can tell you that experts here at the Pentagon have pen and paper in hand and they're working out how we would realize that drawdown as quickly as we

can. And again, your question about is it more dangerous now? We've never taken for granted any opportunity that we have to continue to assist the

Ukrainians with their defense needs. We're not taking anything for granted. And as I've said before, we're going to -- we're going to continue to

provide as much as we can, as fast as we can. Yes, David?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You just said that the Russians continue to be frustrated, not making any progress on the ground.

KIRBY: Right --


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You say that most days. Does it -- does that mean that the Ukrainians are fighting the Russians to a standstill or are the

Russians making progress in ways that aren't measured by advances in the front line?

KIRBY: I think we're going to be careful here at the Pentagon in terms of providing a qualitative report card assessment here and putting a name on

it. Standstill or what have you. What I would tell you, David, is that the Ukrainians continue to fight back very bravely and skillfully.

And you've heard me use the word creatively. And I would say that that continues to be the case. They are making good use of their own knowledge,

their own situational awareness, their skill sets. And certainly, they're making good use of the material that they are getting not just from the

United States, but from many other nations as well.

And they -- if you just look at the map, and you just look at how little progress the Russians have been able to make in the two plus weeks now that

they've been at this, yes, some of that is due to their own stumbles and missteps and logistical problems. But a lot of it, a lot of it, is due to

the Ukrainian resistance and how adaptive they are proving to be on the field and frankly in the streets. Travis.

TRAVIS, REPORTER: Yes. In regard to these Russian strikes in western Ukraine and close to the Polish border. As we know, the Russians aren't

always particularly precise with their strikes. And I'm just wondering if there has been any change in the status of U.S. forces deployed to the

eastern flank? Is there any heightened alerts for change of posture or any additional preparations that have been made since we've seen those strikes

move farther west?

KIRBY: Without getting into details about forced posture, I could tell you that everybody that's serving and bolstering NATO's eastern flank is pretty

alert, pretty vigilant, as you might expect. I know of no specific changes that have been made or are planning to be made in the coming days just

based on the fact that this training facility in western Ukraine was hit. Yes, Abraham.

ABRAHAM, REPORTER: Thanks, john. Two questions. One, when U.S. publicly states what it will not do, like enforcing no-fly zone, or the Polish MiG

transfer, does that not harm Ukraine and give Putin carte blanche? And secondly, often you say that Russia does not have air superiority.

However, if Russia's flying 200 Sorties a day, and Ukraine's flying five to 10 and can't fly its combat aircraft, because Russia has complete SAM

coverage, how is that not air Superiority for Russia?

KIRBY: I'm not going get into the data metrics here with you. We still assess that Russia does not have air superiority over Ukraine and that the

Ukrainians are defending their space ably. That doesn't mean that it's not contested, Abraham. Of course, it is.

I mean you can see that for yourself in some of the video footage that gets put out there. But it's contested, because the Ukrainians are finding ways

to continue to try to defend their airspace and to preserve their own mobility and maneuver space. I'm sorry, you had -- was there another?

ABRAHAM: Sure. The first question about the -- when DoD publicly states, when the U.S. publicly stays what it's not going to do, doesn't that harm

Ukraine because it gives Putin a carte blanche?

KIRBY: I think if you were to -- well, I can't speak for Mr. Putin. I doubt Putin would, after making as little progress, as he has made in this

unprovoked war of his, it would be hard for us to say that somehow, he's being aided by statements that we are making about what we will, or we

won't do. What I think is important, Abraham, is not just talking about things that we don't believe would be helpful, because of the escalatory

nature of it, such as a no-fly zone.

But let's talk about what actually is happening. And I just talked a little bit about how hard the Ukrainians are fighting for their country. But we,

too, are providing them and continue to do it over the course of the weekend. And now there's a new drawdown package. And we will continue to

fill that out and send material to them in concert with their needs after talking to them about what those needs are as fast as we can and as

effectively as we can.

And it's not just the United States, 14 other nations are doing this, bilaterally, of course, we're helping coordinate some of that security

assistance, but they're making good use of it. So, there's a lot being done. Yes. Yes, Caitlyn.

CAITLYN, REPORTER: I was going to ask just going back to the airstrike in the West, it's believed to be the closest Moscow has come yet to the Polish

border. So, what are you taking this as? Is this Putin testing the West in any way? And how are we kind of showing response to that?

KIRBY: Yes. I think we just need to be -- you know, first of all, I'm not - - I don't have granularity on the Russian targeting process.


They hit a Ukrainian military training facility. They also hit some airfields in the previous few days in western Ukraine. They are clearly

expanding some of their target sets here. I can't get into their heads and to tell you exactly what was behind that target on that day, with that many

cruise missiles. I don't want to just reduce this to some sort of signaling.

If Mr. Putin was trying to signal his displeasure about a strong united NATO, with this war of his, then he's failed, because he's getting exactly

what he says he doesn't want. A strong united NATO on his Western flank.

Just over the last few days, we moved some Patriot batteries from Germany to Poland. And we're going to continue to look at potential repositioning

if we need to, to defend NATO's eastern flank.

So, I can't again, I can't speak for Mr. Putin and what messages he's trying to send, sending it with cruise missiles on a training facility,

again, I think that's being generous to him if that's in fact, all he did was try to signal. All he has done with that, and everything else he's

doing in Ukraine, and please, let's not get focused only on a weekend strike on a training facility, look at the damage and the death he's

causing in places like Kiev, and Kharkiv, and Mariupol. And, you know, people losing their lives and their homes.

He clearly has more than a message in mind here. He clearly has the occupation of Ukraine in mind. And he also clearly has diplomatic options

available to him that he is obviously not proving willing to take. Now we have heard talks about -- of talks and we obviously would love to see them

succeed clearly. But there hasn't been much progress in that regard. So, again, I want to be careful here that we're not reducing the kind of damage

and death he's causing to some sort of message signaling. I think that's being way too generous to what the Kremlin is trying to do inside Ukraine.

Carla Babb.

MACFARLANE: You have been listening to the Pentagon spokesperson, John Kirby there, speaking, addressing those attacks on the military base in

western Ukraine over the weekend. He's saying that the Russian strikes on the West were "not a turning point," that they expected Russia to expand

their targets.

Kirby also saying that the halt of Russian forces has largely been due to Ukrainians' effective fighting on the ground, and he said that the 14

nations, Western Allies, were working closely to collaborate to defend NATO's Western Front.

Let's bring in -- or let's bring back our CNN Political Analyst Josh Rogin. And we're also joined by CNN Military Analyst and Retired U.S. Air Force

Colonel Cedric Leighton. Thank you both for coming up after this. Colonel, I just want to turn to you first on what we heard John Kirby's saying just

then that the strikes on the West were not a turning point, that they expected this expansion. I mean, presumably, you agree with that, do you?

RET. COL. CEDRIC LEIGHTON, CNN MILITARY ANALYST: I actually do, Christina, yes, because, you know, it's part of the war plan that I thought the

Russians were going to execute, I thought that they were going to actually go for the entire country. A lot of people have, of course, said, you know,

they'll just take a part of it, or they'll try to stop at toppling the Iranian government.

But I think this is a territorial extension effort, if you will, or expansion effort. And that's what I think we're seeing. So it's no surprise

that Putin and the Russian forces have done this in the West. What perhaps isn't surprising is that they haven't done it earlier.

MACFARLANE: And, Josh, strategically speaking, I mean, we have one of the reporters, I think, asking, posing the question to John Kirby in that press

conference, how much is Putin potentially testing the west by, you know, targeting that military base so close to the border? I mean, in some

senses, is he dipping his toe here to see what the response would be?

JOSH ROGIN, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: I think that's exactly right. I mean, sure, it's true that the U.S. government predicted that this would happen,

but that's kind of besides the point, isn't it? The real question is, what is -- what are we going to do about it? And the answer for John Kirby seem

to be not much at all.

And yes, of course, we expected for Putin to expand the war to attack the supply lines, to attack the logistics routes, to disable the West's ability

to get aid and military equipment to besiege Ukrainian cities, and I haven't heard any plan to deal with that. And when I talked to Biden

administration officials privately, they say it's only a matter of time before they do cut off the supply lines and then what's going to happen?


So, yes, it's nice to predict what's going to happen, it's another thing to have a plan to do something about it, but all we get from Kirby and the

Biden administration is, oh, don't worry, we'll protect NATO. And that comes as little comfort to the Ukrainians.

MACFARLANE: Absolutely. And we heard Kirby looking almost slightly frustrated that he was being posed with those questions.

Colonel, I want to ask because we spoke to Ukrainian MP Kira Rudyk at the top of the show, she, once again, as we've heard from so many Ukrainians,

calling for no-fly zone, as Josh has been saying, you know, the U.S., Western allies pushing back on that, but not really providing any other

solutions as to how they will help. Militarily speaking, what options do they have? I mean, obviously, they can't share the detail of that with us

right now, so from your experience, what would they be looking at at this juncture to step up?

LEIGHTON: Yes, Christina, the imposition of a no-fly zone in the same manner that we did over Iraq, you know, we had both a northern no-fly zone

into southern no-fly zone between the two Gulf Wars, that would be problematic in this particular case, unless we decided we collectively --

U.S. and NATO decided that we would actually be willing to shoot down Russian aircraft or any other aircraft that happened to be violating the

provisions of a no-fly zone or a restricted airspace that we would establish.

So as far as other options are concerned, it really depends how far we want to go. And, you know, if we did it the way a military person would normally

do it, they would want to eliminate all kinds of hostile targets that would include aircraft, as well as ground-based artillery and rocket fire and

that would be much more extensive than a no-fly zone in the traditional sense of that term.

MACFARLANE: All right. Unfortunately, I don't have time to get into sanctions with you, Josh, but thank you both for being with us. Josh Rogin

there and colonel. Thank you both. All right. Stay with us.

LEIGHTON: Absolutely.

MACFARLANE: We'll be back after this short break.


MACFARLANE: Welcome back. Much more on the crisis in Ukraine in just a moment. But first, here's a look at some other headlines with following.

Some nations around the world are opening up after reporting declines in COVID-19 cases. China, meanwhile, is battling its worst outbreaks since the

early days of the pandemic.

Two major Chinese cities are right now under lockdown, impacting tens of millions of residents. China's Northeastern Jilin province has even banned

travel within its borders to curb COVID spread. Health officials say Sunday marked the fourth consecutive day that China reported over 1,000 New COVID

infections all contracted locally.

Saudi Arabia has carried out its biggest mass execution in decades. 81 prisoners in a single day. State-run media says those executions have been

convicted of crimes like murder and pledging allegiance to ISIS, al-Qaeda and the Houthis. State media says all of those executed have been arrested,

tried in Saudi courts, and provided with the right to an attorney.

Now this shocking news is reverberating in the world of football. Some are calling Chelsea's win against Newcastle United this weekend, the Premier

League's "game of shame." On one hand, you have Chelsea playing at home for the first time since sanctions were imposed by the U.K. government against

their Russian owner, Roman Abramovich. And on the other, Saudi owned Newcastle, take a listen to their manager fielding some uncomfortable

questions post-match.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yesterday, Saudi Arabia, 81 people were executed in the largest mass execution in years. SO A lot of Saudi flags fluttering in your

section there today. I mean, what do you think of that and now bankrolling your football team?

EDDIE HOWE, MANAGER, NEWCASTLE UNITED: Just going to answer questions on the game and on football. I'm still bitterly disappointed from the defeat.

So I think that's -- it's only right that I might stick to football.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Obviously, the gentleman's questionnaire about the executions, I know that's not one of your (INAUDIBLE) but just a wider

sense how you feel having to sit there after a match and deal with questions like this, because Thomas Tuchel has the same at the moment he's

having to deal with that, as well. Questions are really so far off your kind of -- above your pay grade, how you feel about it?

HOWE: I know. I'm here to manage the football team and coach the football team. So I'm well aware of what's going on around the world. But my focus

is on trying to produce a team to win football matches and get enough points to stay in the league. And that's all I talk about.


MACFARLANE: So is this a watershed moment for football? Senior Sports Analysts Darren Lewis joins me here in London. Good to see, Darren. You, I

believe, were at the game last night. It is surreal for us to listen to that press conference and think that this is football today. However, the

reality is many feel this has been a moment long coming.


MACFARLANE: Do you feel this is going to be the watershed moment for English football ownership that people now think it is?

LEWIS: Yes, I do. And the reason for that is the scrutiny on Roman Abramovich, the questions that have arisen from that scrutiny, that rope in

some of the other owners in English football, the fit and proper persons test, we'll get to that in a second, but as far as that footage we just saw

a moment ago is concerned, we can no longer have managers or football clubs saying I just want to focus on what goes on on the pitch.

Not when as you've been saying a few moments ago, you have 81 executions in a single day in the Saudi states, not when the owners of Newcastle United

have links to the Saudi state that they have yet to prove are not in existence. Those questions will continue to remain. Their humans record --

human rights record will continue to be scrutinized and all of the other owners within English football around whom there are questions, they will

have to find a way to address those questions to everyone's satisfaction.

MACFARLANE: Yes. And you like I believe that, you know, sports and politics, sports or geopolitics, cannot be separate as people so often

think they can. But having said that, is it right that Eddie Howe, Thomas Tuchel, the managers of those teams should be fielding questions be the

frontline of -- on the frontline of this when, you know, we haven't yet really heard from the Premier League or the club's themselves?

LEWIS: Well, I've got two answers to that because on the one hand, I think it is unfair in some respects. They are brought to those clubs to focus on

what happens on the field. But when you look at the concept of sports washing, it is about creating an image, and affable, knowledgeable guys

like Thomas Tuchel, like Eddie Howe, who have a relationship with us and the English media, they are used in some respects as the front men for

those attempts to improve the image of football clubs.

Thomas Tuchel is a fantastic ambassador for Chelsea Football Club during a terrible time for them. He's honest, he's open. He's empathetic. He speaks

in a way that your average football fan can understand, your cynical neutral can understand, and what he puts is a respectable sheen on what is

a very difficult time for Chelsea football.

MACFARLANE: I just want to talk to you briefly because we're running out of time sadly about, you know, what reform needs to happen.


Because we know that there is a process in place called a fit and proper test that owners have to pass in order to, you know, to own these clubs. I

mean, clearly, it's not fit for purpose.

LEWIS: No, it's not. And it needs a radical reform. Now, football often periodically promises to do just that, but they don't. And that's why you

have so many cases where people take over football clubs, they claim to have the money, they are found not to have that money. Football clubs go to

the wall. We've had one or two in the last two or three years where that has been the case. And there is no real accountability.

And I think after this particular episode, the people who run the game will be under severe pressure to do something about the situation so that we

don't have another Chelsea again.

MACFARLANE: Darren Lewis, great to have your perspective with us this evening. Thank you.

LEWIS: Thanks, Christina.

MACFARLANE: All right. Stay with us. We'll be back with much more on the invasion of Ukraine in just a minute.


MACFARLANE: Alarming words from the U.N. Secretary General as Russia's war with Ukraine takes a dangerous new turn. Antonio Guterres says nuclear

conflict is within the realm of possibility. He said that an escalation of the war, by accident or design, threatens all of humanity.


ANTONIO GUTERRES, U.N. SECURITY-GENERAL: The appeals for peace must be hurts. This tragedy must stop. It's never too late for diplomacy and

dialogue. We need an immediate cessation of hostilities and serious negotiations based on the principles of U.N. Charter and international law.

We need peace, peace for the people of Ukraine. Peace for the world. We need peace now.


MACFARLANE: Well, it comes one day after Moscow attacked a military base near Poland's border, perilously close to NATO's frontline and there are

signs Vladimir Putin may be getting ready to double down and join forces with some of his allies.

Russia media reports the pro-Kremlin Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov has entered or arrived in Ukraine. A senior U.S. official tells CNN that Moscow

has requested military and economic aid from China, something both sides deny.

CNN spoke to a Ukrainian Member of Parliament a few hours ago from his position in the Kiev region. He tells us the military has some supplies but

the country still needs concrete support from allies.



OLEKSIY GONCHARENKO, UKRAINIAN PARLIAMENTARY MEMBER: Army is equipped but even army not enough equipped with anti-tank, especially anti-aircraft,

that's why we are asking so desperately the West to help us to defend our women and children and to defend the whole free world because Putin is not

going to stop.

Civilian guards, which I'm also a member of, yes, we just -- we have tens of thousands, of course, have weapons like these that I have now with me.

It's a automatic rifle. But we don't have a vest, not enough helmets, not enough anti-tank weapons, very few, I can say anti-tank weapons. And we

need much, much more weapons. And we hope that our athletes and their free will, will provide us with this because --

MACFARLANE: And this just in in Russia, an extraordinary show of dissent, an anti-war protester interrupted a state television broadcast Monday

night. The woman shouted "Stop the war" and said "No to war" before the station cut away. She was also holding a sign with several anti-war

messages. Extraordinary. OK. Thank you for watching tonight. Stay with us on CNN. "QUEST MEANS BUSINESS" is coming right up next.