World Biden freezes military aid to Ukraine after Putin summit as leaders plea for help

01:20  19 june  2021
01:20  19 june  2021 Source:   washingtonexaminer.com

Biden’s First International Test: Can He Save Ukraine From Putin?

  Biden’s First International Test: Can He Save Ukraine From Putin? For many in Ukraine, the summit between Biden and Putin on June 16 has taken on a quasi-mythical quality. They fear it will be reminiscent of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact where Germany and the Soviet Union carved up Eastern Europe between them. “This is another meeting where the U.S. and Russia will divide the world between them,” said one alarmed Kyiv resident, Slava, 32. “I just hope that Ukraine will still be a free country.

Before the Biden - Putin summit , two other aid packages to Ukraine – totalling 5 million and including patrol boats and heavy 30mm cannons – were approved, out of a total of around .5 billion since 2014. When President Donald Trump froze aid to Ukraine in 2019, all hell broke loose. Democrats claimed that Trump did it to pressure Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky into reopening a corruption investigation into then-candidate Joe Biden ’s family’s business dealings in Ukraine . Trump countered that the aid was frozen out of more general corruption concerns, but he

The Biden White House has temporarily halted a military aid package to Ukraine that would include lethal weapons, a plan originally made in response to aggressive Russian troop movements along Ukraine ’s border this spring. The aid package would be worth up to 0 million, according to four people But officials on the National Security Council ended up putting the proposal on hold after Russia announced it would draw down troops stationed near Ukraine and in the lead-up to President Joe Biden ’s high-stakes summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin . One of the sources said the

As Russia mounted 100,000 troops on the Ukrainian border in March, the White House and the Department of Defense readied a $100 million military assistance package that was frozen once President Joe Biden announced a summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin, according to reports.

Joe Biden, Vladimir Putin are posing for a picture © Provided by Washington Examiner

The Russian troop buildup, allegedly for unannounced military exercises, coincided with smaller American exercises in the Black Sea region. A previous buildup in eastern Ukraine led to the annexation of Crimea in 2014 and a protracted war that simmers seven years later. As Putin massed attack helicopters and aircraft on the eastern Ukrainian border, Biden and NATO leaders condemned Russia and called for a drawdown but made no public offers of military assistance. Meanwhile, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky urgently called for entry into NATO and the military weaponry his country lacks.

Biden, unlike predecessors, has maintained Putin skepticism

  Biden, unlike predecessors, has maintained Putin skepticism President Joe Biden frequently talks about what he sees as central in executing effective foreign policy: building personal relationships. © Provided by Associated Press FILE - In this March 10, 2011 file photo, then U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, left, shakes hands with Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin in Moscow.

While the aid package is frozen , an official told Politico that the weapons could be quickly sent to Ukraine if necessary. The Pentagon previously approved two aid packages valued at 5 million this year. "His drawdown should not have triggered a drawdown of U.S. support." Russia’s actions toward Ukraine were a key source of contention ahead of President Biden ’s summit meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin . Earlier this week, Biden said Ukraine has not met the criteria required to join NATO.

When Presidents Vladimir Putin and Joe Biden meet in Geneva on Wednesday for their eagerly awaited summit , they will discuss a wide range of topics, including coronavirus, the war in Donbass, and the fight against cybercrime. The two groups will discuss strategic stability, the fight against coronavirus, the situation in Ukraine , and prospects for economic cooperation. They will also look to find common ground on other issues, such as information security, the fight against cybercrime, climate change, and the Arctic.

“Russia is not the entity that takes words seriously,” Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba told the Washington Examiner at a June 3 meeting in Kyiv.

“If they see that the only reaction the West can offer is words, they will understand that their hands are untied to that,” he added when asked if he was disappointed that Biden had not offered military assistance in the face of Putin’s aggression. “They can do fairly aggressive actions against Ukraine and against other countries as well.”


The minister gave no indication at the time that he was aware that a military package from the United States was in the works, but he did outline the types of assistance needed.

Some US allies near Russia are wary of Biden-Putin summit

  Some US allies near Russia are wary of Biden-Putin summit KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Central and Eastern European nations are anxious about the coming summit meeting between U.S. President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin, wary of what they see as hostile intentions from the Kremlin. Some in the countries that once were part of the Soviet Union or the Moscow-led Warsaw Pact during the Cold War worry that Washington could scale down support for its allies in the region in a bid to secure a more stable and predictable relationship with Russia.

The first US-Russia summit of the Biden presidency will take place in Geneva, Switzerland, on 16 June. That comes at the tail end of Biden 's already scheduled trip to the United Kingdom for the G7 summit and Brussels for a meeting of Nato leaders , giving the president plenty of time to hear from US allies before sitting down with Putin . White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki, in a statement announcing the meeting, said the summit would cover a "full range of pressing issues" as the US seeks to "restore predictability and stability" to its Russian relations.

After over three hours of talks with Vladimir Putin in Geneva, Switzerland on Wednesday, Biden told reporters that he will continue to press Russia on issues like cyber-attacks and "human rights" and, at the same time, will work with Moscow in the fields of arms control and global stability. “There is no substitute… for a face-to-face dialogue between leaders . None,” Biden said, adding that he and Putin have “a unique responsibility to manage the relationship between two powerful and proud countries.”

“Our navy and air defense are our top priorities,” Kuleba said. “This is big, this is serious, and this is where we can really do a lot together because the United States [is] also particularly strong in these fields.”

The Ukrainian Foreign Affairs Ministry did not respond to requests Friday for comment about reports of the frozen assistance package.

The package was reported to include short-range air defense systems, small arms, and anti-tank weapons, according to a report. The Department of Defense referred questions by the Washington Examiner to the White House's National Security Council, which did not respond to inquiries Friday.

Ukraine is battling Russian-backed separatists in the eastern Donbass region of its country, which provides vital land access to the Sea of Azov and the Crimean Peninsula.

Russia has heavily militarized Crimea but can only reach the strategic point by sea and a bridge hastily built by Putin after the annexation. Security analysts suggest that Putin is vying for a land bridge to Crimea and eventually control of the Ukrainian port at Mariupol.

With US-Russia relations at low point, Biden, Putin each bring a wariness to Geneva summit

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Putin was always bound to be cast as an adversary in the West’s media narrative around the summit . While Biden , proposing the meeting back in April, said that it would help to foster “a stable and predictable relationship with Russia,” he added that it would have to be one Putting aside some mutual curiosity, the relationship between Putin and the Republican leader never really took off, and his most bombastic officials, like John Bolton and Mike Pompeo, tended to ensure that the ties between the two nations were in a state of hostility. Biden , by contrast, is far more predictable, with little ideological

media captionBiden Putin Summit : Decoding the world leaders ' body language. The presidents of the US and Russia have praised their talks in Geneva but have made little concrete progress at the first such meeting since 2018. Disagreements were stated, said US President Joe Biden , but not in a Mr Biden said they did not need to spend more time talking and there was now a genuine prospect to improve relations with Russia. As a gift to the Russian leader , Mr Biden brought Mr Putin a custom-made pair of aviator sunglasses, a style favoured by the US president, and a crystal sculpture of a

Ukraine’s only deterrent against Russia is greater military assistance, analysts and government officials say.

“There is a need,” former Ukrainian National Security Council member Alexander Danyliuk recently told the Washington Examiner in Kyiv. “Russia has an advantage in aviation. We don’t have an anti-aircraft defense system.”

In an interview prior to the Biden-Putin summit announcement, Deputy Assistant Defense Secretary Laura Cooper told the Washington Examiner that the Pentagon was providing a wide range of military assistance to Ukraine.

“We are working to ensure Ukraine, in particular, has the resilience it needs to defend itself against acts of Russian aggression, and here we have a very comprehensive training and equipment program,” Cooper said.

At the time, the Russia, Ukraine, and Eurasia official described assistance including Javelin anti-tank missiles, counter-artillery radars, grenade launchers, and Humvees.

Asked if the Russian troop buildup prompted additional military assistance, Cooper said security assistance conversations were ongoing.

Biden-Putin summit live updates: 'I'm always ready,' Biden says

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“We always talk about Ukraine's requirements, and we're always evaluating what they need and what the threat environment is,” she said. “It's a very active and dynamic conversation and continues as such.”


Kuleba said talk needs to turn into actual military assistance, something Biden reportedly rescinded ahead of the Putin summit.

“Talking is important. However, talking becomes irrelevant when it's not followed by actions,” the foreign minister said.

Tags: News, National Security, Department of Defense, Pentagon, Ukraine, Russia, Joe Biden, Putin

Original Author: Abraham Mahshie

Original Location: Biden freezes military aid to Ukraine after Putin summit as leaders plea for help

Biden is playing a long game with Putin. Will it work?: ANALYSIS .
After their summit this week, President Joe Biden said he is playing a long game with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Will it work?: ANALYSIS. After their afternoon summit in the Swiss capital, Biden said give him time to see if his approach works -- trying to play to Putin's long desire to have Moscow seen as a key power, respected and feared around the globe.

usr: 19
This is interesting!