The American people “are demanding some real accountability” for billions allocated to Kiev, Mike Johnson has said
The Biden administration has not made clear exactly what it wants to achieve by providing billions of dollars in support to Ukraine, newly elected US House Speaker Mike Johnson has said, indicating that Republicans may want to handle that separately from financial help to Israel.
In an interview with Fox News released on Thursday, Johnson, a Louisiana Republican who is considered a Trump ally and a skeptic of Ukraine aid, said the American people “are demanding some real accountability” on the matter.
The speaker stressed that while Republicans are not opposed to helping Kiev in the conflict with Moscow, “we want to know what the object is there, what is the end game in Ukraine.”
“The White House has not provided that,” he explained, adding that he has made this position clear to top administration officials.
Johnson also said the consensus among House Republicans is that they “need to bifurcate” aid to Ukraine and Israel, which has been locked in a bloody conflict with the Palestinian armed group Hamas for several weeks now.
The speaker’s remarks came after the Biden administration asked Congress last Friday to approve a massive new $106 billion assistance package, with more than $60 billion of that sum earmarked for Kiev. The remainder is intended to address the security needs of Israel and Taiwan, as well as the turbulent situation on the southern US border.
However, a group of US Republican senators introduced a bill on Thursday seeking to decouple funding for Israel from that for Ukraine. One of its sponsors, Senator Mike Lee (R-Utah), stated it “is unreasonable for the administration to exploit an aid package for Israel to siphon off billions of taxpayer dollars in yet another blank check for Ukraine.”
The renewed pushback by Republicans opposed to Biden’s Ukraine strategy – who famously vowed to support the country “for as long as it takes” – comes as National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan warned last week that the funding Congress had approved “has nearly run out.”
Meanwhile, CNN reported earlier this month, citing US officials, that the Pentagon has been growing increasingly concerned over depleting ammunition stockpiles needed to simultaneously support both Israel and Ukraine. The latter country has been engaged in a faltering counteroffensive against Russian defenses for several months now, struggling to gain any significant ground while suffering heavy casualties, according to Moscow.
October 27, 2023 at 01:39PM