Following Vladimir Putin’s announcement that Russia would continue its nearly one-year military offensive, US President Joe Biden made a big address in Warsaw on February 21 in which he pledged that Russia would never achieve triumph in Ukraine.

Putin stated that the Kremlin would no longer be a party to the New START nuclear armaments deal with the United States in his annual state of the nation speech, accusing the West of intensifying the conflict. The Russian president declared that his nation will continue to battle to “systematically” accomplish its goals and that ever-tougher sanctions against it “will not succeed.”

Biden vowed that “Ukraine will never be a victory for Russia — ever” in a speech delivered hours later in the capital of NATO partner Poland. Days before the war’s one-year anniversary, the 80-year-old leader paid a surprise visit to Kyiv. It was his first trip there since the invasion started.

Surrounded by a flag-waving crowd outside Warsaw’s Royal Castle, Biden responded directly to Putin’s accusations, saying the West “is not plotting to attack Russia”. He said Putin “thought autocrats like himself were tough” but faced the “iron will” of the United States and its partners. “There should be no doubt: our support for Ukraine will not waver, NATO will not be divided and we will not tire.”

Biden earlier met Polish President Andrzej Duda, saying his visit had come “at a critical moment”. He also reaffirmed Washington’s “iron-clad” commitment to NATO’s principle of collective defense. Duda said that thanks to Biden “we can see that America can keep the world order”.