Carney laughs off Russian anchor’s threat: “People say crazy things on TV all the time”

White House press secretary Jay Carney on Monday laughed off comments from a Russian TV news anchor who said what could have been construed as a nuclear threat.

Russian TV mushroom cloudDmitry Kiselyov stood in front of a screen displaying a large image of mushroom cloud and told the audience, “Russia is the only country in the world realistically capable of turning the United States into radioactive ash.”

ABC News’ Jonathan Karl read Kiselyov’s quote during the White House press briefing.

“I mention this because this is state-controlled Russian television, which as we know, doesn’t generally broadcast stuff that is not signed off by the government of Russia,” Karl said.

“People say crazy things on TV all the time,” Carney said laughing.

This was Russian state TV Karl noted.

“But I take your point entirely,” he said as the press room erupted in laughter.

Carney laughed then composed himself.

“We will focus on the actions of the Russian government,” he said. “We are focused on the aid we are providing to the Ukrainian government. We are focused on marshaling a strategy with our partners around the world, especially in Europe, for how to deal with this challenge posed by Russia. And we are making sure that Russia is incurring costs for the provocations it has engaged in and the actions it has taken. That’s what we’re focused on right now. Those costs are real and they will increase if Russia continues down this path.”

Watch the exchange here via C-SPAN:

Watch also: Russian TV anchor: Russia capable of turning US into ‘radioactive ashes’


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