Congress and Ukrainian President Zelensky want the Biden administration to deliver heavier Soviet-era military weapons to Ukraine.
Specifically, both Congress and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky have pressured Biden officials to help broker the transfer of heavier Soviet-made weaponry to Ukraine, including MiG fighter jets and S-300 surface-to-air missile systems. It’s a message that Zelensky could echo on Wednesday when he addresses Congress.
The State Department has been working to identify which countries currently have the Soviet-made S-300 air defense systems and is examining how they could be transferred to Ukraine, sources said. But it remains unclear how the US would backfill those countries’ supplies of surface-to-air missiles, according to multiple sources familiar with the discussions.
Reports are that the Russian advance toward Kyiv has stopped. The Russians have dug in their positions and are trying to hold the territory that they have gained.
If the US can figure out how to get these needed air defense weapons to Ukraine, it could turn the war.
At some point, the Biden administration is going to have to call Putin’s bluff and accept the reality that Putin will view everything that the US does as an escalation.
The goal for the US is not to get into a shooting war with Russia, but it is clear that there is an opening for the West to deliver the weapons that Ukraine needs to defend itself without expanding the war.
Putin’s invasion increasingly looks like a quagmire, and an infusion of heavy defensive weapons to Ukraine could be enough of a push to get Russia to negotiate an end to Putin’s war of choice.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association