29 Members of Congress: Not one penny more to Ukraine 29名美國國會議員：不多給烏克蘭一分錢
The Honorable Joseph R. Biden President of the United States The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW Washington, DC 20500
Dear President Biden,
April 20, 2023
We write to express concern regarding the U.S. response to Ukraine. Over a year ago, Russia launched an invasion that has upended decades of peace in Europe. We are deeply concerned that the trajectory of U.S. aid to the Ukrainian war effort threatens further escalation and lacks much-needed strategic clarity.
Over the past year, the U.S. has been the principal financier of the Ukrainian defense effort. As the war enters its second year, there is no end in sight and no clear strategy to bring this war to a close. A proxy war with Russia in Ukraine is not in the strategic interest of the United States and risks an escalation that could spiral out of control.
The recently announced shipments of M1 Abrams tanks will require months of training and transport.1 Ground Launched Small Diameter Bombs will similarly take months to arrive.2 These announcements signal that your administration is settling in for a long-term conflict. The current strategy of sanctions and drawn-out aid will only prolong the conflict, leading to escalation and more violence. Our national and economic security demand an alternative. Unrestrained U.S. aid for Ukraine must come to an end, and we will adamantly oppose all future aid packages unless they are linked to a clear diplomatic strategy designed to bring this war to a rapid conclusion.
To date, the U.S. has committed over $113 billion in military, economic, and humanitarian assistance to Ukraine,3 becoming its single largest benefactor. The contributions of our NATO allies pale in comparison. Beyond dollar value, there is also a stark difference in substance and motivation. As the U.S. is further indebting itself to provide tanks, air defense systems, missiles, and long-range rockets to a battlefield an ocean away, those with conflict at their borders have been content to send uniforms and personal protective equipment. Our allies condition their contributions of major military equipment on a corresponding U.S. commitment – all while calling for the U.S. to do more.
With every new aid package and every new weapon provided to Ukraine, the risk of direct conflict with Russia climbs. The decision to issue High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS) to Ukraine last June was seen as a serious provocation, given the enhanced capabilities these weapons afforded.5 At the time, the HIMARS sent by the U.S. doubled Ukraine’s strike range. Now, casting risk aside, we seem prepared to double Ukraine’s range yet again with even longer-range weapons systems. Similarly, the U.S. reversed course on sending tanks, an action that was once considered to be too inflammatory.
END ‘UNRESTRAINED’ SUPPORT FOR UKRAINE: Nearly 30 Republican lawmakers sent a letter to President JOE BIDEN demanding he cease unfettered aid to Ukraine and instead delineate a pathway to end the war.
“A proxy war with Russia in Ukraine is not in the strategic interest of the United States and risks an escalation that could spiral out of control,” reads the letter led by Sens. MIKE LEE (R-Utah), RAND PAUL (R-Ky.) and J.D. VANCE (R-Ohio). “Unrestrained U.S. aid for Ukraine must come to an end, and we will adamantly oppose all future aid packages unless they are linked to a clear diplomatic strategy designed to bring this war to a rapid conclusion.”
The 29 members of the Senate and House remain a small faction of the Republican Party which is generally aboard with the administration’s weapons-transfers plan. But the letter does show that as the 2024 election heats up, and as Trump and potentially other candidates express skepticism for continued support for Ukraine, they will have staunch backers in Congress.