Fact Check: Trudeau Misspoke When He Said 'Russia Must Win This War' -- He Corrected, Saying 'Ukraine Must Win This War'

Fact Check

  • by: Sarah Thompson
Fact Check: Trudeau Misspoke When He Said 'Russia Must Win This War' -- He Corrected, Saying 'Ukraine Must Win This War' Said In Error

Did Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau say that Russia must win this war? Yes: Trudeau did misspeak at the end of a news conference in Poland. While speaking of how aid and military equipment would be supplied to Ukraine, he accidentally said "Russia must win this war." He immediately corrected himself and said, "Ukraine must win this war against Russia."

The six-second video clip (archived here) was published on X by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia on February 26, 2024. It was captioned:

Russian MFA Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova to @JustinTrudeau:

Justin, thanks for the support. It will be so, we promise.

Do not jump on the bandwagon of our Victory without repentance though.

This is what the post looked like on X (formerly Twitter) at the time of writing:

Twitter screenshot(Source: X screenshot taken on Tue Feb 27 14:46:44 2024 UTC)

This video clip is real and has not been altered, but it has been cut short to intentionally omit Trudeau's self-correction, which came as soon as he misspoke.

His comment came during a news conference in Warsaw, Poland, on February 26, 2024, after he and the prime minister of Poland, Donald Tusk, met. The full video is 39:11 minutes long and was posted on the YouTube channel CPAC (Canada's Cable Public Affairs Channel). Throughout, Trudeau and Tusk took turns speaking and at the end took some questions from reporters. Trudeau spoke in both French and English. When he spoke, the context was always in support of Ukraine. For example, at 10 minutes in, Trudeau switched from speaking French to English and said:

On Saturday I was in Ukraine to mark two years since Putin's brutal invasion of this sovereign territory. I was joined by three fellow world leaders; the current chair of the G7, the current chair of the European Union, and the current president of the European Commission. We were there, all four of us, to demonstrate our collective resolve to be there for Ukraine. And to support Ukrainians in their defense of their freedom, their language, their culture, their territory and for the values of democracy and rules-based order that we all share.

At the end of the news conference the two leaders took some questions from the reporters. At the 37:27 mark, the last question was posed to Trudeau. The reporter asked:

Prime Minister, would you mind just to answer an [inaudible] question about delays in delivery and what you have in mind to replace what you are not able to deliver to Ukraine. Thank you.

Trudeau began to respond in French, realized his error and began his response again in English. At the end of this response regarding all the ways Canada intended to support Ukraine, Trudeau clearly misspoke and immediately corrected himself. He said:

We will always be there to support with what Ukraine needs. Our conversations are ongoing including two days ago with Ukrainian leadership including Volodmyr Zelenskyy about how we can best help. We have delivered over $10 billion dollars in aid including significant military aid, drones, light armored vehicles, guns and munitions. We will continue to be there with what we have, and we will continue to purchase on the international markets equipment that Ukraine needs like all our allies do as well. We are working closely with the American procurement system to get the NASAMS that we have purchased for Ukraine to Ukraine. We're accelerating the process of getting more light armored vehicles off the line in London, Ontario, at the factories there, and we are stepping up in every way we can because we know that Russia must win this war -- sorry -- that Ukraine must win this war against Russia. Thank you.

Lead Stories fact checks about the Russia/Ukraine war can be found here.

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  Sarah Thompson

Sarah Thompson lives with her family and pets on a small farm in Indiana. She founded a Facebook page and a blog called “Exploiting the Niche” in 2017 to help others learn about manipulative tactics and avoid scams on social media. Since then she has collaborated with journalists in the USA, Canada and Australia and since December 2019 she works as a Social Media Authenticity Analyst at Lead Stories.


Read more about or contact Sarah Thompson

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