President Biden on Thursday announced new sanctions on Russia over its multi-front war on Ukraine and 7,000 more U.S. service members to Germany, but maintained that U.S. military will not fight in Ukraine.

But Biden stopped short of sanctioning Putin himself, and he did not announce a ban on Russia from the SWIFT banking system, saying Europe is not on board with such a move.

On orders from Russian President Vladimir Putin, troops began attacking Ukraine overnight Wednesday.


"Putin is the aggressor," Biden said. "Putin chose this war. And now, he and his country will bear the consequence."

Biden said the sanctions, in coordination with a coalition of other nations, would target more major Russian banks, including VTB, Sberbank, Bank Otkritie, Sovcombank OJSC and Novikombank. The sanctions will make it harder for Russia to do business in dollars, Euros, pounds and yen, and there will be "new limitations" on what can be exported to Russia, he said.

The sanctions will also target Russia elites: Sergei Ivanov and his son Sergei, Andrey Patrushev and his son Nikolai, Igor Sechin and his son Ivan, Andrey Puchkov, Yuriy Solviev and two real estate companies he owns, Galina Ulyutina and Alexander Vedyakhin, the U.S. said.

President Biden speaks about the Russian invasion of Ukraine in the East Room of the White House, Thursday, Feb. 24, 2022, in Washington.  (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

The sanctions will also limit the borrowing opportunities for 13 Russian entities and enterprises, according to the U.S.: Sberbank, AlfaBank, Credit Bank of Moscow, Gazprombank, Russian Agricultural Bank, Gazprom, Gazprom Neft, Transneft, Rostelecom, RusHydro, Alrosa, Sovcomflot, and Russian Railways.

Biden said he believes Russia has "much larger ambitions than Ukraine. He wants to, in fact, reestablish the former Soviet Union."

"America stands up to bullies," Biden declared. "We stand up for freedom. This is who we are."

"Liberty, democracy, human dignity – these are the forces far more powerful than fear and oppression," he added. "Make no mistake, freedom will prevail."

Biden spoke with G7 leaders Thursday morning before his speech, saying allies are "in full and total agreement."


The U.S. and partners are also going after the Russian military and Belarusian individuals and entities for their support for the invasion.

Russia's ruble currency hit its weakest level Thursday.

Firefighters working on building in Chuguiv, Ukraine after attacks

Firefighters work on a fire on a building after bombings on the eastern Ukraine town of Chuguiv on February 24, 2022, as Russian armed forces are trying to invade Ukraine from several directions, using rocket systems and helicopters to attack Ukrainian position in the south, the border guard service said.  (Photo by ARIS MESSINIS/AFP via Getty Images)

The G7 meeting included Biden, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, French President Emmanuel Macron, Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi, Japanese Prime Minister Kishida Fumio, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, European Council President Charles Michel and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.

Meanwhile, Biden maintained that the United States will "defend every inch of NATO territory with the full force of American power."

"Let me say it again—our forces are not and will not be engaged in the conflict with Russia in Ukraine," Biden said. "Our forces are not going to Europe to fight in Ukraine, but to defend our NATO allies and reassure those allies in the East."


"There is no doubt, no doubt, that the United States and every NATO ally will meet our Article IV commitments, which says, an attack on one is an attack on all," Biden said.

The Pentagon said the number of U.S. service members authorized to go to Germany is 7,000. Last month, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin put 8,500 U.S. troops on heightened preparedness.

Biden held a National Security meeting on Russia's invasion of Ukraine

President Biden held a National Security Council meeting on the U.S. response to Russia's invasion of Ukraine, Thursday, Feb. 24, 2022.  (White House)

Biden said he spoke with Austin and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley about "preparations for additional moves should they become necessary to protect our NATO allies and support the greatest military alliance in the history of the world, NATO." 

"This is a dangerous moment for all of Europe, for the freedom around the world," Biden said. "Putin has a committed assault on the very principles that uphold the global peace. Now the entire world sees clearly what Putin and his Kremlin allies are really all about." 

Biden was pressed by reporters Thursday on why his administration has yet to impose sanctions directly on Putin – which he did not directly answer. 

Biden did, though, say he has no plans to meet with Putin. 

Biden speaking to leaders on Russia invading Ukraine

President Biden met virtually with his G7 counterparts and agreed on "devastating" sanctions against Russia over its war against Ukraine, Thursday, Feb. 24, 2022. (White House)


Biden, Thursday morning, convened a National Security Council meeting in the Situation Room.

A senior U.S. defense official told Fox News on Thursday that Russia's attack is "just the initial phase," and that they Russian military activity to "unfold in multiple phases." 


"They have every intention of decapitating the government and installing their own government," the official said. 

Russia launched more than 100 ballistic missiles into Ukraine overnight, including short range ballistic missiles, medium range ballistic missiles, cruise and Surface to Air. 

The official said Pentagon officials "haven't seen something on this scale" since World War II, saying officials anticipate that it will be "very bloody, very impactful" and continue "for a long, long time to come." 

"This is a war of choice," the official said. 

Woman in the aftermath of Ukraine invasion

A woman walks past the debris in the aftermath of Russian shelling, in Mariupol, Ukraine, Thursday, Feb. 24, 2022.  (AP Photo/Evgeniy Maloletka)

Putin, in an address Wednesday night announcing he had made the decision to green light Russian military operations in Ukraine, said that Moscow’s "analysis" had concluded that "confrontation with these [Ukrainian] forces" was "inevitable."

Putin, though, threatened the west and countries that try to interfere with Ukraine with "consequences you have never seen."


"A couple of words for those who would be tempted to intervene," Putin said Wednesday night. "Russia will respond immediately and you will have consequences that you never have had before in your history."

In a reminder of Russia’s nuclear power, Putin said "no one should have any doubts that a direct attack on our country will lead to the destruction and horrible consequences for any potential aggressor."

Among Putin’s pledges was to "denazify" Ukraine. World War II looms large in Russia, after the Soviet Union suffered more deaths than any country while fighting Adolf Hitler’s forces. Kremlin propaganda sometimes paints Ukrainian nationalists as neo-Nazis seeking revenge — a charge historians call disinformation. Ukraine is now led by a Jewish president who lost relatives in the Holocaust.

Russian forces invaded Ukraine by land, air and sea in the largest military attack of one state against another on the European continent since the Second World War. 

The wide-ranging attack on Ukraine on Thursday hit cities and bases with airstrikes or shelling, as civilians piled into trains and cars to flee. Ukraine's government said Russian tanks and troops rolled across the border in a "full-scale war" that could rewrite the geopolitical order. 

Ukraine Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said the country severed diplomatic relations with Russia and called "on all our partners to do the same. By this concrete step you will demonstrate that you stand by Ukraine and categorically reject the most blatant act of aggression in Europe since WWII."

While the attack on Ukraine was largely condemned by the West, it’s unclear whether forces will intervene. NATO is sending additional forces to bolster defenses in eastern Europe.

And Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy promised: "We will defend ourselves."

An advisor to Zelenskyy said Thursday that, so far, about 40 people have been killed in the Russian attic on the country, and that several people have been wounded. He didn’t specify whether casualties included civilians.

Zelenskyy said he would be providing weapons to citizens who want to help defend the country, instructing them on Twitter to "be ready to support Ukraine int he squares of our cities."

"The future of the Ukrainian people depends on every Ukrainian," he said Thursday, urging all those who can defend the country to come to the Interior Ministry’s assembly facilities.

Russia "has embarked on a path of evil," Zelensky said, but Ukraine "is defending itself & won't give up its freedom no matter what Moscow thinks."

Zelenskyy said sanctions would be lifted "on all citizens of Ukraine who are ready to defend our country as part of territorial defense with weapons in hands." 

Russia's Ukraine attacks reported

The map shows where Russia attacks been reported in Ukraine

"Russia treacherously attacked our state in the morning, as Nazi Germany did in #2WW years," Zelenskyy tweeted. "As of today, our countries are on different sides of world history." 


The Russian military claimed to have wiped out Ukraine’s entire air defenses in a matter of hours, and European authorities declared the country's airspace an active conflict zone. Russia's claims could not immediately be verified, nor could Ukrainian ones that it had shot down several Russian aircraft, according to The Associated Press. The Ukrainian air defense system and air force date back to the Soviet era and are dwarfed by Russia’s massive air power and precision weapons.

Western counties were anticipating hundreds of thousands of people to flee from the attack on Ukraine, Reuters reported. Highways outside of Kyiv swelled with traffic Thursday leading to Poland, and lines of people waited for gasoline, to withdraw money or to purchase other supplies, such as food and water.

Fox News’ Greg Norman, Danielle Wallace and The Associated Press contributed to this report.