A Superpower – Act Like It

September 17, 2023

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This Administration’s pathetic “We are with Ukraine for as long as it takes” was amorphous and embarrassing from the beginning.  Non-existent and/or bad policy and terrible grammar.

“…with Ukraine for as long as it takes” is not a strategic goal because it does not answer the fundamental question – as long as it takes to do what?

It is time Washington –

We are with Ukraine until the Ukrainian victory.

We are with Ukraine until Ukraine wins.

That wording means something, states a goal and sounds like the commitment of a genuine superpower undeterred by the voiced threats of a one time power whose only successes are not on the battlefield but deterring American support for Ukraine.

Since declaring his revisionist aims in Europe and Eurasia at the Munich Security Conference in 2007, Vladimir Putin has sought to destroy the American-built security order in Europe.  The Kremlin’s current focus is on Ukraine, but its designs go much further.  As the draft treaties submitted to the United States and NATO in December 2021 make clear, Putin aims fundamentally to upend not just Ukraine but Europe. Moving beyond Ukraine means into NATO countries where American financial cost will make the financial support of Ukraine look like a pittance.  And there will need to be American “boots on the ground”.  Now, with Ukrainians willing to do the fighting is the time to give Ukraine what is needed to win and win now.

A Ukrainian defeat of Russia is in Ukraine’s best interest, in the United States’ best strategic interests, in NATO’s critical strategic interests and the free world’s vital interests.

Biden Administration officials’ robot like “for as long as it takes” deserves ridicule and cat calls every time used. After the blistering critiques the Administration’s worn-out phase has received anyone and everyone who continues to use it should be ashamed.

It is not just the Biden Administration, there has been bipartisan failure in dealing with Putin and seeing Ukraine’s sovereignty and borders were secure (Budapest Memorandum).

The George W. Bush Administration did virtually nothing when Putin invaded Georgia.

The Barrack Obama Administration did virtually nothing when Putin invaded Crimea and the Donbas.  When asked for Javelins the President denied them.

Congress had to start authorizing and specifically appropriating funds for “lethal” support for Ukraine.

The Trump Administration did provide Javelins but, among other things, sent all the wrong signals to the Kremlin.

Then Putin escalates the war and launches a full-scale invasion.

Congress and the Biden Administration have unquestionably provided Ukraine substantial military and other support.  But the numbers do not tell the whole story – the critical story.

Every weapons system requested has been greeted with a “no”.  Further requests with “no, they don’t need it” and/or “they won’t know how to use it”.  Then eventually the weapon is given, and Ukraine not only uses it properly but proves the weapons can be used effectively in ways the United States had not imagined.

Weapons system after weapons system has gone through what has become the sad and embarrassing no, no, no, maybe, then ok sequence all while Russia is murdering people, committing war crimes, and at least in the case of the thousand-upon-thousands of kidnapped Ukrainian children, committing genocide.

From the West Wing we have been told repeatedly that the United States has given Ukraine what it needed when it was needed.

The disingenuousness of that statement is underlined by dead bodies that needed and did not get the weapons needed when they could have been most effective.

The United States would never send its troops into battle without air superiority and long-range precision artillery.

Our Friends of Ukraine Network (FOUN) began urging the Administration to start training Ukrainian pilots on F-16 in 2018!  Only now has Washington allowed some NATO countries to train Ukrainian pilots.  We are months away from doing so ourselves.

We have urged and Ukraine has asked for ATACMS for months-and-months and those requests have been met with made up and totally disingenuous excuses regarding availability.  Even though ATACMS are presently being shipped to non-combatant countries.

Now, we are told President Zelenskyy will be coming to Washington next week to meet with President Biden after the upcoming United Nations annual meeting in New York.

What might we expect? Please, let us hear - -

“We are with Ukraine until the Ukrainian victory.”

Might this be the time the Administration begins to talk about a Ukrainian victory?  

Might this be the time the Administration admits to having ATACMS to provide Ukraine?

If ATACMS are to be the “get” from this visit experience urges us to be suspicious.  If Washington says it will provide ATACMS watch to see if there is a date, a time when Ukraine will receive those critical weapons and how many.

The manufacturer is capable of shipping within days and that is what should happen.

We cannot say for sure that if Ukraine had what it asked for when it asked for them that the war would be over.  But we can say for certain Ukraine not having the weapons needed and asked for (and available) allowed the demoralized and crippled Russian army to build substantial lines of defense that took time they should never have been allowed – defenses that have and are making Ukraine’s counteroffensive more difficult than it had to be.

I close this FOUN Blast with a link to a CNN interview with General Philip Breedlove, USAF (ret.), former Supreme Allied Commander – Europe and a member of the U.S.-Ukraine Foundation’s Friends of Ukraine Network. He and Lt. General Ben Hodges, USA (ret.) former U.S. Army Commander – Europe and FOUN member wrote a letter to The Speaker when they heard new funds for Ukraine are in jeopardy.

It is always smart to listen to both these fine men and military experts.

General Breedlove on CNN: