Joy Behar Slammed Over Fear Russia-Ukraine Crisis Will Impact Trip to Italy

Joy Behar is facing a backlash on social media after expressing fears that Russia's invasion of Ukraine will affect her plans to vacation in Italy.

Tanks were shown rolling into Ukraine's capital, Kyiv, on Friday, after Russian President Vladimir Putin declared the start of a "special military operation" in the neighboring country on Thursday.

And as Behar, 79, discussed the escalating crisis during Thursday's installment of ABC's The View, she admitted that she was "scared of what's going to happen in Western Europe"—specifically as it pertains to her travel plans.

The View moderator Whoopi Goldberg, 66, kicked off the discussion, calling the situation in Ukraine "so disheartening," adding: "The people in Russia, they don't want this war. [Putin] wants it because he's trying to hold on."

Raising the human cost of the conflict, co-host Sunny Hostin, 53, said: "What I also thought about was the fact that estimates are 50,000 Ukrainians will be dead or wounded and that this is going to start a humanitarian crisis, a refugee crisis in Europe.

"We're talking about 5 million people that are gonna be displaced. I mean, it's heartbreaking to hear what is going to happen."

Behar, who is of Italian ancestry, then spoke of her plans to visit Italy—which is over 1,000 miles away from the conflict—saying: "Well, I'm scared of what's going to happen in Western Europe, too. You know, you plan a trip, you want to go there.

"[I wanted] to go to Italy for four years. I haven't been able to make it because of the pandemic—and now this. It's like, what's going to happen there, too?"

A clip of Behar's comments, which can be viewed at the top of this article, was shared on Twitter, where it was met with widespread derision. The video has been viewed more than 3 million times.

"The true horror of the worldwide pandemic and Russia invading Ukraine? Joy Behar hasn't been able to take her trip to Italy," tweeted Barstool Sports blogger Kevin Clancy. "Thoughts and Prayers for Joy. We hope she makes it through this tragedy."

Podcast host Liz Wheeler wrote in reaction to the seconds-long clip: "I literally can't believe Joy Behar said this."

Responding to Wheeler's tweet, New York Post and Fox News columnist Karol Markowicz commented: "Did Putin even stop to think how his invasion would affect Joy Behar's trip to Italy?"

"You almost have to respect Joy Behar's unwavering commitment toward ensuring that boomers are the most hated generation alive," said another Twitter user. "Please send your thoughts and prayers to Joy during this difficult time."

Newsweek has contacted a representative of Behar for comment.

Elsewhere in the discussion on The View on Thursday, Behar also called out the pro-Putin stance taken by a number of conservative commentators.

"Doesn't it scare you that people on the right in this country are on Putin's side?" Behar asked. "What are they, making a lot money over there to spew these lies?"

"There's a parallel there to the insurrection," replied Hostin, referencing last year's Capitol riot. "People thought that they could just take the election and I think that's why you see so many people on the right think that this is OK. This is the fall of our democracy in the world."

"We all have to keep in mind that what happens on the planet affects us all," Goldberg added. "This starts with a little land grab and who knows where it's going to stop. The entire world is after [Putin]. This isn't just us doing this. This is the whole world saying stop."

Goldberg returned to The View on February 14, after she was placed on a two-week suspension from the show for saying during a discussion that the Holocaust was not about race, but rather "two groups of white people."

During the Holocaust, 6 million Jews were murdered in the 1940s by the Nazis, who declared themselves to be a part of a superior "Aryan" race.

The Oscar-winning screen star apologized for her comments, though ABC News President Kim Godwin later announced that she had been suspended "to take time to reflect and learn about the impact of her comments."

"The View" co-host Joy Behar
Joy Behar attends The World Science Festival 2016 Gala at Jazz at Lincoln Center on May 23, 2016, in New York City. The TV personality is facing backlash after expressing fears during a discussion on "The View" that the Russian invasion of Ukraine will impact her plans to travel to Italy. John Lamparski/Getty Images