Russia did not launch a full-scale invasion of Ukraine in 2014 because the Russian army was not prepared for aggression of this magnitude, said the Russian president Vladimir Putin on the air of the national TV channel Russia-1.
"We didn't have hypersonic weapons then, but now we do. There are other modern systems, and in 2014 there was nothing like this," he said in response to a question from journalist Pavel Zarubin.
Also, according to Putin, then the Russian economy was not ready for Western sanctions, and after 2014, Russia was able to carry out import substitution and strengthen its financial system.
The Russian president also commented on the annexation of Crimea in 2014. According to him, everything happened there "from the wheels". He stressed that the Russia could not refuse to protect the Crimean residents, who started to be "run over" by Ukrainian "nationalists". Although in the same 2014, Putin assured that there are no Russian troops in the Crimea, and those "green men" who invaded the territory of sovereign Ukraine allegedly have nothing to do with Russia.