[David Lienemann, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons]

Biden Escalates The War In Ukraine

Joe Biden has escalated the war between Ukraine and Russia, according to multiple reports. For most of the war, he has been hesitant to approve Ukraine’s use of U.S. weapons within Russia due to fears that it could lead to a direct confrontation between the U.S. and a nuclear-armed adversary.

The Daily Caller writes that the president has now changed his mind, something that Putin has warned would have dire consequences, especially for Europe.

Biden’s decision represents a major reversal on America’s approach to the Russia-Ukraine war, as he had previously resisted calls to provide Ukrainian forces with offensive weapons to strike inside Russia, according to Politico, which cited anonymous U.S. officials and other sources familiar with the move. Ukrainian forces have suffered setbacks in the country’s northeastern region, apparently prompting the policy reversal, but some Ukraine skeptics have cautioned that allowing strikes inside Russia with U.S. weapons could invite unwelcome and serious escalation from Russian President Vladimir Putin.

“The president recently directed his team to ensure that Ukraine is able to use U.S. weapons for counter-fire purposes in Kharkiv so Ukraine can hit back at Russian forces hitting them or preparing to hit them,” one U.S. official told Politico. The official added that the administration’s policy of not permitting long-range strikes inside Russia’s borders “has not changed.” 

Ukrainian forces can now use U.S. weaponry to counter Russian missiles bound for Kharkiv, fire upon soldiers assembling inside Russia to attack nearby Kharkiv, or take down Russian bombers attacking Ukraine, according to Politico. However, the new stance will reportedly not allow Ukraine to use that firepower to target civilian infrastructure or launch long-range attacks against military installations further in the Russian interior.

The Biden administration had previously asserted that allowing Ukrainian strikes inside Russia with U.S.-provided weaponry could prompt Putin to escalate or broaden the conflict, according to Politico. However, the deteriorating situation around Kharkiv reportedly forced the administration to change its mind, especially as Ukrainian officials have emphasized their need to disrupt the buildup of troops pouring into the northeast from just over the border.

The escalation by Biden comes as Ukraine’s leader Volodymyr Zelensky has asked for NATO troops to be brought to the front. He claims he only wants the troops to be used as “trainers.”

Putin has said that any troops in the front would be considered “legitimate targets” after France’s Emmanuel Macron recently said that he had “not ruled out” sending his nation’s troops into battle in Ukraine.

[Read More: Red State Dems Facing An Onslaught]


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