Former US Ambassador to Ukraine on the global impact of the Russia-Ukraine war

US Ambassador to Ukraine on the global impact: So as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine wears on, support in the form of ammunition and weapons is dwindling a bit, including from the United States. For the broader implications of this war, now entering its third year.

US Ambassador to Ukraine

We know the US has supplied roughly $45 billion somewhere in that range to support Ukraine, but they’re still not matching russian military might. So what would happen in your assessment, if Congress doesn’t pass another package?

US Ambassador to Ukraine on the global impact

If Congress doesn’t pass another package, the Ukrainians will have a very hard time holding the Russians back. We can see that right now, Phil. We can see that in Avdivka where the Ukrainians have had to crank back on their artillery firing to defend themselves because they don’t have the shells. The Russians are able to push, and they were able to push the Ukrainians out of Avivka. So we’re seeing it right now. That’s the kind of thing that will unfortunately happen if the United States doesn’t come through with the support that it’s promised.

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Can we talk a little bit about why this conflict is so important to the United States and here at home, what the stakes are globally and what specific impacts we could feel here at home if Russia wins this war? There’s obviously a fear that a NATO ally could be.

Exactly right. So if the Russians get all the way to the border of NATO, we know they’re already on the border of NATO in the baltic states, but if they get to Poland, they get to Romania, if they get to Slovakia, and they are looking across the border at us troops, NATO troops, us troops right there on the border. And the Russians have indicated, have demonstrated over time, over decades, over centuries that they don’t stop. This is what President Zelensky just said. They don’t stop. And if that happens, that is a real threat to the United States security. It’s a threat to our soldiers. So that’s what’s at stake right here, right now.

That would then be, in effect, boots on the ground. Because of article five in the United nations, one nation is attacked. They’re all attacked. At the UN General assembly met today, number of speeches. Representatives from 64 countries expressed their support for Ukraine, but they can’t make any binding resolutions. So what role does diplomacy play really at this point? Or will this all be decided on the battlefield?

A lot will be decided on the battlefield. There’s no doubt about it. However, it is important that the Ukrainians do. What they’re trying to do now is build support, build support for their peace plan. They’ve got a peace formula. They know what they’re trying to do. And they’re trying to build support using diplomatic means in the UN, in capitals for this plan that would see the Russians out of their country. This is the important thing.

President Zelensky has also said that a lot of it, going back to your question, a lot of this pushing back the Russians is going to happen militarily. It’s clearly going to happen militarily. And they’re going to have to rearm and rebuild and retrain, and they will then have to push back. But part of it will also happen diplomatically, he said. And so this is what they are preparing for.

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