The looming threat of war in Ukraine by the end of the year

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The looming threat of war in Ukraine by the end of the year (and that could give Putin a win)

The White House warned on Monday that US aid to Ukraine will run out by the end of the year and that Russian President Vladimir Putin could win the war if Congress does not agree to spend more funds.

“We’re out of money and almost out of time,” White House budget director Shalanda Young said in a blunt letter to Republican House Speaker Mike Johnson, reflecting growing frustration with President Joe Biden. . Biden is facing a stalemate in Congress.

Biden asked Congress in October for a $106 billion national security package that includes military aid for Ukraine and Israel, but the issue has created divisions on Capitol Hill.

“There is no magic pot of funding available to meet this opportunity,” Young wrote. “This is not a problem for next year. The time to help a democratic Ukraine to fight Russian aggression is now. It is time for Congress to act,” he stressed.

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“I want to be clear: without congressional action, by the end of the year we will run out of resources to get more weapons and equipment for Ukraine,” he wrote.

Stopping the shipment of weapons and equipment, the letter added, would “jeopardize Ukraine’s achievements” and “increase the likelihood of Russian military victories,” the document said.

National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan continued.

“Congress must decide whether to continue to support the fight for Ukraine’s independence … or ignore the lessons we’ve learned from history and let Putin prevail,” Sullivan told White House reporters. . “That’s easy. It’s a hard choice.”

The answer of the president of the House of Representatives

Ukraine is pushing for more Western aid as Russian forces step up attacks after the Kyiv counteroffensive fails.

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But Johnson, who took office in October after ousting his predecessor Kevin McCarthy, responded coldly to the letter.

“The Biden administration hasn’t really addressed any of my legitimate concerns about the lack of a clear strategy on Ukraine,” Johnson said on social network X (formerly Twitter).

He insisted that Republicans want to make any aid to Ukraine subject to a real change in US policy on the southern border with Mexico to stop the arrival of irregular migrants.

But Congress has been paralyzed for months by Republican infighting as the radical right opposes giving more aid to Kyiv.

After the budget extension approved in November and endorsed by Biden, lawmakers have until February to negotiate a fiscal budget for fiscal year 2024, which has already begun.

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The war in Ukraine received financing

Young wrote that all funds, except for 3% of military aid, had been spent by mid-November.

“If the economy of Ukraine collapses, they will not be able to continue fighting. Putin understands this very well, so Russia has made the destruction of the economy of Ukraine a central element of its strategy, which can be seen in the its attack on grain exports and Ukraine’s energy infrastructure,” the letter said.

European countries are also facing difficulties in obtaining financing for Ukraine.