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Fox News Host Greg Gutfeld Gets Emotional As He Describes Mother-In-Law’s Escape From Ukraine

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OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.


The mother-in-law of Fox News late-night host, and co-host of the top-rated show “The Five” was stranded in Ukraine as the war began between that nation and Russia.

It was harrowing for her, and for Gutfeld and his family, as the host told the story of how she escaped and thanked his colleagues for their help.

His mother-in-law was in Lviv, at the same time Fox News’ Pentagon correspondent Lucas Tomlinson, who Gutfeld spoke to during the segment on Friday, was there.

“I do want to point out that like our coworkers are unbelievably awesome [because] the things that they have been doing for a grouchy cynical bastard like myself. People have been helping me out, and somebody who has been obnoxious to them before and will probably be obnoxious to them after,” the host said.

“These guys over there I won’t name them, but you probably know who they are, and you’ve seen them, are absolute heroes helping out a little old lady, you know, they just met,” he said.

“And maybe by tomorrow or in the next day, she’s going to be with her daughter and it’s because of those guys that work for Fox News,” he said.

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But his co-host Jesse Watters could not resist the desire to make a quip as he asked Gutfeld if, even after everything that his colleagues did for him, he would still be a “jerk.”

“But Trey [Yingst], and Steve Harrigan, and Scott, they’re all just frickin’ heroes,” he said, referring to the network’s vice president of field and production operations and two Fox News correspondents who are in Ukraine.

The day before he had confirmed that his mother-in-law had arrived safely in Poland.

“Just to let everybody know my mother-in-law crossed into … Poland about half an hour ago, so she’s in a car on her way to Warsaw to see her daughter, Elena,” he said, mentioning his wife.

“Her husband passed away from COVID last year, so she’d been spending time — she was born in Ukraine, she’s a Ukrainian-Russian — so she was with her cousins or whatnot in this little tiny village when all this stuff happened. So we had to get her out of there and get her back, you know, thanks to Fox,” he said.

“She was fortunate enough to make it to safety, but there are still millions and millions in danger,” the host said.

On Friday the U.S. Department of State has now issued a level 4 travel advisory telling American citizens to get out of Russia.

The advisory warned against reprisal and “harassment against U.S. citizens by Russian government security officials.”

It updated a previous level 4 warning that came around a week ago as sanctions increased against Russia by the United States and its allies during the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine.

It also warned that there would be limited ways in which the United States government could help citizens in Russia.

“Do not travel to Russia due to the unprovoked and unjustified attack by Russian military forces in Ukraine, the potential for harassment against U.S. citizens by Russian government security officials, the Embassy’s limited ability to assist U.S. citizens in Russia, COVID-19 and related entry restrictions, terrorism, limited flights into and out of Russia, and the arbitrary enforcement of local law.  U.S. citizens should depart Russia immediately,” the warning said.

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“U.S. citizens residing or traveling in Russia should depart immediately.  Limited commercial flight options are still available.  Overland routes by car and bus are also still open.  If you wish to depart Russia, you should make arrangements on your own as soon as possible.  If you plan to stay in Russia, understand the U.S. Embassy has severe limitations on its ability to assist U.S. citizens, and conditions, including transportation options, may change suddenly.  U.S. citizens who are able to depart Russia for another country and are in need of emergency assistance upon arrival may contact a U.S. embassy or consulate in that country,” it said.

“U.S. citizens should note that some credit and debit cards may be declined as a result of sanctions imposed on Russian banks.  Also, there are some reports of cash shortages within Russia.  U.S. citizens should make an alternative plan for access to money and finances if remaining in Russia.

“Due to Russia’s further invasion of Ukraine, an increasing number of airlines are cancelling flights into and out of Russia, and numerous countries have closed their airspace to Russian airlines.  In addition, airspace around southern Russia is restricted, and a number of airports in the area have closed.  U.S. citizens located in, or considering travel to, the districts of the Russian Federation immediately bordering Ukraine should be aware that the situation along the border is dangerous and unpredictable,” the alert said.

“Given the ongoing armed conflict, U.S. citizens are strongly advised against traveling by land from Russia to Ukraine.  In addition, there is the potential throughout Russia of harassment of foreigners, including through regulations targeted specifically against foreigners.  Given the ongoing armed conflict and the potentially significant impact on international travel options, U.S. citizens should depart Russia immediately via the limited commercial options still available,” it said.

“The U.S. government’s ability to provide routine or emergency services to U.S. citizens in Russia is severely limited, particularly in areas far from the U.S. Embassy in Moscow due to Russian government limitations on travel, the number of U.S. staff, and the ongoing suspension of operations, including consular services, at U.S. consulates.

“On February 28, the Department of State authorized the voluntary departure of eligible family members and non-emergency personnel from U.S. Embassy Moscow,” it said.

It also warned against travel to “The North Caucasus, including Chechnya and Mount Elbrus, due to terrorism, kidnapping, and risk of civil unrest (and) Crimea due to Russia’s occupation of the Ukrainian territory and abuses by its occupying authorities.”

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