Fox News host Tucker Carlson recently voiced his opinion on the ongoing war in Ukraine, saying it is “not more significant” to him than gas prices in the United States.
Speaking at the Family Leadership Summit in Iowa on Friday, Carlson said that while he is not a defender of Russian President Vladimir Putin, he does not care what the Russian leader does because Putin is “not my president.”
The Fox News host later told the crowd that while the war in Ukraine has affected millions of Ukrainians, it “is not more significant to me” than rising gas prices.
“I’m not a Putin defender, despite what you might have heard. I don’t really care one way or the other because he’s not my president, he doesn’t preside over my country,” Carlson said.
“What he does in Ukraine — while I think historically significant, certainly significant to Ukrainians — is not more significant to me than what gas costs. In fact, it’s not even in the same universe.”
Carlson has previously been accused of defending Putin on his nightly segment. On July 13, Carlson suggested that Italy’s 340,000-strong military force is a bigger threat to the world than Russia’s roughly 1 million-strong army. He also added that Italy’s gross domestic product (GDP), which is slightly larger than Russia’s, puts the European country “in a better position to take over the world than Vladimir Putin,” as reported by The Business Insider.
The Fox News host, however, omitted the fact that Italy’s annual military spending is only half of Russia’s, despite having a bigger economy. According to a comparison from the Global Firepower Index, Italy has a defense budget of $29 billion. In contrast, Russia’s defense budget is $154 billion.
The same index also put Russia’s military power in second place, falling behind only the U.S. In comparison, Italy’s military strength was ranked 11th out of 142 countries worldwide.
In addition to Carlson’s comments last week, the Fox News host has regularly been featured on Russian state-controlled media outlets for criticizing the U.S. and NATO and highlighting their “negative role” in launching the war in Ukraine, according to a 12-page memo the Kremlin sent out to state-friendly media outlets, a copy of which was obtained by Mother Jones.