OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.
President Joe Biden appears to have left a bad impression in the minds of some allies following his speech to the United Nations in New York City on Thursday.
According to reports, South Korean President Yoon Suk-Yeol reacted in a “foul” manner, not realizing his mic was still on, criticizing both Biden and the Democrat-controlled Congress.
After his speech, Biden pledged $6 billion at the Global Fund’s Seventh Replenishment Conference to fight AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria worldwide, but the funding would have to be approved by Congress, the Daily Caller reported.
“With bipartisan support in our Congress, I have pledged to contribute up to $6 billion to that effort,” Biden said. “So I look forward to welcoming a historic round of pledges at the conference resulting in one of the largest global health fundraisers ever held in all of history.”
“How could Biden not lose damn face if these f—ers do not pass it in Congress?” Yoon asked his aides on a hot mic Wednesday, Fox News reported, citing the South China Morning Post.
“It would be so humiliating for Biden if these idiots don’t pass it in Congress,” he also said as he left the event, according to the Washington Post.
— Steve Herman (@W7VOA) September 22, 2022
A criticism used on US lawmakers by the President of South Korea has gone viral on social media — after a hot mic picked him up using an expletive https://t.co/NbbLYLJfcx
— CNN (@CNN) September 23, 2022
— peood1 (@peood11) September 23, 2022
The remark sent shockwaves through the South Korean diplomatic community, as the country’s national security as well as security in the region hinges on a good relationship with the United States, which has around 28,000 troops stationed there.
“He wasn’t speaking publicly on the stage but in passing, and although I don’t know who recorded it and how, I actually think it should be verified,” a South Korean official told reporters afterward, according to Yonhap.
“I think it’s highly inappropriate to draw a link between private remarks and diplomatic accomplishments,” the official added, in response to criticism that the South Korean leader created a diplomatic crisis. “It’s quite regrettable that a diplomatic disaster is being talked about over something like that when he is doing everything to complete a demanding schedule in the national interest of the Republic of Korea.”
Yoon has been in office since May.
As for Biden, much of his speech directed criticism at Russia for invading neighboring Ukraine.
“The U.N. Charter’s very basis of a stable and just rule-based order is under attack,” Biden warned.
Let us speak plainly. A permanent member of the United Nations Security Council invaded its neighbor, attempted to erase a sovereign state from the map.
Russia has shamelessly violated the core tenets of the United Nations Charter — no more important than the clear prohibition against countries taking the territory of their neighbor by force.
Again, just today, President Putin has made overt nuclear threats against Europe and a reckless disregard for the responsibilities of the non-proliferation regime.
Now Russia is calling — calling up more soldiers to join the fight. And the Kremlin is organizing a sham referenda to try to annex parts of Ukraine, an extremely significant violation of the U.N. Charter.
This world should see these outrageous acts for what they are. Putin claims he had to act because Russia was threatened. But no one threatened Russia, and no one other than Russia sought conflict.
In fact, we warned it was coming. And with many of you, we worked to try to avert it.
Putin’s own words make his true purpose unmistakable. Just before he invaded, Putin asserted — and I quote — Ukraine was “created by Russia” and never had, quote, “real statehood.”
And now we see attacks on schools, railway stations, hospitals, wa- — on centers of Ukrainian history and culture.
In the past, even more horrifying evidence of Russia’s atrocity and war crimes: mass graves uncovered in Izyum; bodies, according to those that excavated those bodies, showing signs of torture.
This war is about extinguishing Ukraine’s right to exist as a state, plain and simple, and Ukraine’s right to exist as a people. Whoever you are, wherever you live, whatever you believe, that should not — that should make your blood run cold.
That’s why 141 nations in the General Assembly came together to unequivocally condemn Russia’s war against Ukraine. The United States has marshaled massive levels of security assistance and humanitarian aid and direct economic support for Ukraine — more than $25 billion to date.