By Daniel DePetris
Reports that President Donald Trump agreed to lift his hold on $250 million in U.S. security assistance to Ukraine were welcomed by lawmakers outraged at the administration’s decision to review the package.
The howls of protest on Capitol Hill came from both sides of the political aisle, with Rep. Adam Kinzinger, R-Illinois, calling the potential aid block “unacceptable” and Senate Foreign Relations Committee ranking member Bob Menendez, D-N.J., denouncing it as a violation of the will of Congress. “Enough is enough,” Menendez said in a written statement. “President Trump should stop worrying about disappointing Vladimir Putin and stand up for U.S. national security priorities.”
While the Trump administration seems to have acceded to their wishes, the president was perfectly justified in reevaluating Washington’s military aid to Kyiv. Contrary to the conventional wisdom in the Beltway—that standing up to Putin and bolstering the Ukrainian government in its war against separatists is a top priority—there are legitimate geopolitical, diplomatic, and security justifications to decrease America’s military assistance to Ukraine.
This piece was originally published by Defense One on September 12, 2019. Read more HERE.