The War in Ukraine: What Russia is Doing about it and How it’s Trying to Win Its Own, and Why Ukraine’s Civilians Are Worst
Meanwhile, the fast approaching winter will likely slow the pace of the war, but is not expected to halt the fighting. David Petraeus thinks the weather favors the Ukrainians. “The Ukrainians can knock on the door and be taken in and get warmed up and get a bowl of soup from their fellow citizens. And of course, they’re welcomed as liberators, whereas the Russian occupiers, the Ukrainians are trying to kill them,” he said.
We should negotiate even if Zelenskyy reached a conclusion that we should stop the punishment. I think he can not do that because of the conviction of the Ukranian people.
The annual conference in Sea Island, Ga. is run by The Cipher Brief, and it brings together people who care about global security to look at the big picture.
A year ago, this conference focused on China. No one talked about Russia invading Ukraine. But this time the theme was the war in Ukraine — where it’s headed, and how it might end.
A top Ukrainian official, Andriy Yermak, the chief of staff to President Zelenskyy, told the conference the conflict needs to end with a Ukrainian victory on the battlefield.
The Russian leader doesn’t have a desire for a solution to the conflict, according to Paul Konrad, who runs the Intelligence Project at Harvard’s Kennedy School. He says it’s the opposite. “Putin’s muscles memorize when he runs into an obstacle, so it escalates,” said Koke. He can still pull out some tricks to try and undermine the perception of what’s happening in the west.
The past 10 days have seen long range missile and drone strikes directed at Ukrainian cities as Russia launched a new front.
This annexation is a huge deal. Dmitri Alperovitch runs a think tank that believes that Putin is betting that he’s going to win the presidency.
“That is essentially a metaphorical burning of bridges,” said Alperovitch. “As long as he has the resources to fight, and he’s in power, there’s a chance that this war will continue for a long time.”
However, Ukraine’s civilians remain extremely vulnerable in the face of Russian air strikes. Dmitri Alperovitch calls this “the blackmail of energy by cutting off gas supplies, by shutting off electricity, by bombing electric substations all over Ukraine.” Putin’s strategy will inflict pain, he said. But he added, “when your kids are dying, you’re going to keep fighting even if you don’t have heat, even if your economy of your country is in dire straits. I think he’s wrong on this front.
The Georgia National Security Correspondent, Marta Makarova, and Kevin McCarthy: Why the U.S. isn’t giving too much attention to Ukraine
At the Georgia conference, in a ballroom filled with experienced national security types, no one suggested the war was near an end. “Most wars end with some sort of negotiated solution, whether that comes out of stalemate or defeat, but I don’t see any prospects of talks in the near term,” said Paul Kolbe, the former CIA official.
This war began with a Russian invasion in 2014, he noted, and is now as intense as it’s ever been. Greg Myre is an NPR National Security Correspondent. Followgregmyre1
KYIV, Ukraine — Sitting on a park bench by a tram stop in Kontraktova Square, Marta Makarova, a 21-year-old budding social media influencer, takes a break from talking with two friends about Instagram to talk instead about the war. Makarova explains how much of their safety depends on U.S. support.
Upcoming U.S. elections and comments by billionaire Musk about negotiating an end to the war are some of the topics that dominate his social media channels.
A Pew Research Center poll last month found that 32% of Republican and Republican-leaning independents believe the United States is providing too much support for Ukraine in the war. That’s an increase from only 9% in March.
Kevin McCarthy, House Republican leader, warned his party members this week not to write a blank check to Ukraine if they win control of the lower chamber next year.
“I think people are gonna be sitting in a recession and they’re not going to write a blank check to Ukraine,” he told Punchbowl News in an interview published Tuesday.
California GOP Rep. Kevin McCarthy, who served as House minority leader in the last session and is now pursuing the House speakership, said in October that Republicans might pull back funding for Ukraine in 2023 if they took the majority in the 2022 midterm elections. Still, after making those comments the GOP leader worked behind the scenes to reassure national security leaders in his conference that he wasn’t planning to abandon Ukraine aid and was just calling for greater oversight of any federal dollars.
There is a group of Ukrainian politicians, activists and soldiers going to Washington in order to lobby for more aid in the run-up to the November elections.
Yevheniia Kravchuk is a member of parliament with President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s Servant of the People party. She’s traveled twice to Washington since the beginning of the war to meet with administration and congressional leaders, making sure to meet with both Democratic and Republican leaders.
A group of Republicans with close ties to Donald Trump have been speaking out against money going to Ukraine, and Kniachuytskyi is concerned about the influence they have on other people.
Over roughly the same time, the percentage of Americans who said they were extremely or very concerned about Ukraine’s defeat fell from 55% in May to 38% in September.
Biden relayed in November that he did not believe Ukraine aid would dry up in a Republican Congress, saying that he “would be surprised if leader McCarthy even has a majority of his Republican colleagues who say they’re not going to fund the legitimate defensive needs of Ukraine.”
Burkovskiy laments how Ukraine got sucked into Trump’s first impeachment, after Zelenskyy came close to submitting to Trump’s demand to announce an investigation into the family of then-candidate Joe Biden.
When there is a member of the House, they will say ‘why are we spending money and Ukraine is corrupt, is not winning,’ and people inUkraine hear this, that’s a new thing.
The balance of power in Washington means that a few Republicans can’t change the direction of U.S. support for the war, he believes. He believes that Ukraine has more problems than the U.S. does.
An Analysis of the U.S. and Russia’s War on Ukraine with CNN’s John D. Vance (David Obeidallah)
A former attorney and host of a daily radio program, Dean Obeidallah is also a columnist for The Daily Beast. You can follow him on social media. The opinions expressed in this commentary are his own. View more opinion on CNN.
I have to be honest with you. The Russian President launched his war on the Ukrainian people in February, but J.D. Vance wasn’t interested in it.
Despite co-signing a resolution calling for the US to stop military and financial aid to the country, Turner was steadfast in his defense of congressional support for Ukraine. House Speaker Kevin McCarthy told CNN last week he opposes the resolution.
This military support for Ukrainians has been credited with allowing the Ukrainians to limit Russia’s invasion and has aided in the regaining of territory seized by Russia.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky stated on his website last week that another kind of Russian terrorist attacks were targeting energy and critical infrastructure. There have been massive reductions in power across the country since Oct. 10.
The White House was a bit skeptical of the fact that assistance from theUkrainian government would dry up. They’ve pointed out that McConnell and McCarthy are among the most ardent supporters of Ukraine.
The War Between Ukraine and the United States: Tucker Carlson, Laura Ingraham and Mike Pence on Fox News Spectroscopy During the 2019 Ukrainian War
“He knows better, but the fact that he’s willing to go down the path of suggesting that America will no longer stand for freedom, I think, tells you he’s willing to sacrifice everything for his own political gain.”
Meanwhile, GOP Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene — who recently declared that if Republicans win the House in next month’s elections that she expects McCarthy “to give me a lot of power and a lot of leeway” — blamed Ukraine for the war shortly after Russia’s attack, saying that “Ukraine just kept poking the bear and poking the bear, which is Russia, and Russia invaded.”
Conservative Fox News stars, including Laura Ingraham and especially Tucker Carlson, have been laying the groundwork with members of the Republican base, readying them for the possibility of an end to US assistance for Ukraine.
Carlson — who declared on his show in 2019 when there was a potential conflict between the neighboring countries that he was “root(ing) for Russia” — did his best in the months before Putin’s attack to paint Ukraine in a negative light. Carlson called Ukrainian leader Zelensky a “puppet of the Biden administration” and claimed that Ukraine was not a democracy.
And just last week, Ingraham derided former Vice President Mike Pence for referring to the United States as the “arsenal of democracy” and suggested our massive military is too depleted to help other countries such as Ukraine. Jim Banks of Indiana, a GOP member of congress, said that the United States can’t put America first when it comes to help people around the world with their problems.
McCarthy and some of his fellow Republicans may or not get it, as Biden suggested. But there’s one person who knows how to deal with it and that’s Mr. Putin. Few people will have greater cause for celebration if the GOP wins back control of the House.
He is not rushing to negotiate with Russia or to press the Ukrainian President. Zelensky,” said one official familiar with Milley’s thinking. “It’s a discussion around a pause in the fighting towards a political end state.”
There is a growing debate within the administration about whether the recently gained ground on the battlefield will lead to renewed efforts to seek a negotiated end to the fighting.
Milley wanted peace and has been pushing it in recent days, as the country of Ukraine takes back Kherson. In comments at the Economic Club of New York on Wednesday, Milley praised the Ukrainian army for fighting Russia to a stalemate, but said that an outright military victory is out of reach.
Administration officials are unsurprised by the comments given that Milley is a fervent advocate for the position internally and concerned about the perception of the administration being divided in the eyes of the Kremlin.
CNN has learned that most of the top diplomatic and national security officials are wary of giving Putin any sort of leverage at the negotiation table and believe Ukrainians must decide when to hold talks, not the US.
Officials said that Milley tried to make it clear that he was not encouraging a capitulation, but rather that he believed now was an ideal time to end the war before it goes into spring or beyond.
But that view is not widely held across the administration. The State Department is on the opposite side of the pole, according to an official. The situation is unique due to the fact that military brass is more in favor of diplomacy than US diplomats.
The US military has dug deep into their weapons inventories to support the Ukrainians and is currently on the lookout for supplies to support them in the winter which raises concerns about how long this war can last.
The US intends to buy 100,000 rounds of artillery ammunition from South Korean arms manufacturers to provide to Ukraine, a US official said, part of a broader effort to find available weaponry for the high-intensity battles unfolding in Ukraine. As part of the deal, the US will purchase 100,000 rounds of 155mm howitzer ammunition, which will then be transferred to Ukraine through the US.
The American Consultative Mission to Ukraine: A Response to Zelensky’s “Historical Address” to the Ukraine Crisis and a Call for New Military Assistance
Ned Price wouldn’t say if the State Department agrees with Milley’s position. Instead, Price deflected to a position that US officials have often made in recent months: the US sides with Zelensky who has said that a diplomatic solution is needed.
A survey from the Chicago Council on Global Affairs stated 40% of people thought the United States should continue its support for Ukraine indefinitely. But Americans are divided on whether the United States should support Ukraine for “as long as it takes,” with support dropping 10 percentage points since the summer.
She said Zelensky’s historic address “strengthened both Democrats and Republicans who understand what is at stake in this fight against Putin and Russian aggression and now with their ally, Iran, as well.”
The speech made a connection between the struggle of Ukrainian people and the revolution that our country is celebrating, as well as to get our attention to the families who will be stuck in the cold in the winter and to know that they are not alone.
I hope that they will send more than one. She noted there’s “been some reluctance in the past” by the US and NATO to provide advanced equipment, but added “We’ve seen with our own eyes how effective Ukrainian military is.”
Clinton, who previously met the Russian leader as US secretary of state, said that it was impossible to Predict what would happen as the war gets closer to Russia and his popularity goes down.
“I think around now, what [Putin] is considering is how to throw more bodies, and that’s what they will be – bodies of Russian conscripts – into the fight in Ukraine,” Clinton said.
The administration announced a new $2.85 billion drawdown for Ukraine, part of more than $3 billion in new military assistance to Ukraine. The drawdown, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Friday, will include “Bradley infantry fighting vehicles, artillery systems, armored personnel carriers, surface to air missiles, ammunition, and other items to support Ukraine as it bravely defends its people, its sovereignty, and its territorial integrity.”
Blinken said the administration would work with Congress to “to provide an additional $907 million of Foreign Military Financing under the Additional Ukraine Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2022.”
The Trump-McCarlensky impasse in Ukraine: an insurance policy against Republican resistance against congressional budget cuts, and an insider’s perspective on the outcome
Several Republican members who switched their votes to support McCarthy on Friday said they are encouraged by a framework of an agreement, but provided no specifics about the deal and said talks are ongoing.
That number was higher than the president requested, and it reflects Democrats’ concern that more funding won’t be forthcoming in a GOP-led House. In some ways, that number was an insurance policy against Republican resistance and the view inside the White House was that that figure would sustain US support for several months.
Administration officials are doubtful additional Ukraine aid will be passed this fiscal year. They believe the $45 billion will be the last major package of Ukraine aid before the current spending package expires on September 30.
Rules changes to the budgetary process could make it more difficult for Congress to pass new aid in September.
The ambassador told CNN that they believe the impasse definitely signals trouble forUkraine aid, as many of them that fought McCarthy have spoken against additional assistance for Kyiv in the past.
The diplomat said that the Freedom Caucus, which isn’t particularly pro-Ukrainian, has just demonstrated its clout.
Others noted they were watching closely to see the kinds of maneuvers McCarthy would make to secure the role, which could potentially include cuts to aid.
The diplomat tells CNN that they are concerned that the policies McCarthy has to make will affect the US role in the world.
According to a third diplomat, giving concessions to lawmakers who have spoken against more aid toUkraine could make it difficult to pass additional assistance legislation.
President Zelensky said that the latest drawdown was an awesome Christmas present for him. And lawmakers in Ukraine told CNN they are not concerned that the future of assistance is at risk, noting the strong past bipartisan and public support for aiding their country.
President Biden started his speech a year ago with a strong critique of Russian President Putin for invading Ukranian.
A year into the conflict in Ukraine, both Biden’s message and the reception it gets in Congress has changed, reflecting domestic politics and the drawn-out nature of the conflict itself.
A few members of Congress wore blue and yellow ribbons on their lapels this year. But a year ago, the House chamber was awash in the colors of Ukraine’s flag as lawmakers gave multiple vigorous and bipartisan standing ovations for Biden’s message on the war.
Biden spent less time talking about the war this year. He received bipartisan applause when he asked whether Americans would “stand for the defense of democracy” — but not all members stood.
Biden said a year ago that the Russian oligarchs and corrupt leaders would be no longer welcome in his country.
When he gave a speech to the ambassador, Biden said “America is united in our support for your country.”
Putin’s China stance on the 2022 Ukrainian War as announced at the Munich Security Conference on Saturday: The First Chinese Top Diplomat in Russia
Republican strategist Ryan Williams said this sentiment has given pause to some Republicans from conservative districts who had supported the war, but are now worried about wider public support among their constituencies.
It is affecting the base. If that continues to grow, it could potentially be a primary issue for Republicans. “The key is to make sure that the litmus test issue doesn’t become a big issue in the Republicans and endanger incumbents who could face conservative challengers that have a different opinion.”
Beijing is prepared to present its peace offer for Ukraine, its top diplomat announced Saturday at the Munich Security Conference, in a rare statement that referred to the conflict as a war.
Territorial and sovereignty integrity of each country will be respected in the proposal from China, Wang said.
The Europeans are wary of Beijing’s intentions as Wang called on them to change their approach to the war.
And European Commission President Ursula Von der Leyen told CNN on Saturday: “We need more proof that China isn’t working with Russia, and we aren’t seeing that now.”
Putin appeared to acknowledge Beijing had questions and concerns over the war in September of 2022, in what appeared to be a veiled admission of diverging views.
In the first instance since the beginning of the war, a Chinese official will be in Russia this month as the top diplomat.
The State of the Union: Secretary Mike McCaul, a Republican in the House Foreign Affairs Committee, and CNN’s Pamela Brown
Texas Rep. Mike McCaul, the chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, told CNN’s Pamela Brown on “State of the Union” in a joint interview with House Intelligence Chairman Mike Turner that aired Sunday that bipartisan support for Ukraine is “still very strong.”
McCaul warns of the risks of hedging support for Ukraine as the one-year anniversary of the war approaches.
They play into the Russian leader as long as they drag this out. Putin’s hands. The Texas Republican said that he wanted this to be a long war because he wanted the American people and Congress to lose faith in him.
After being asked if he thinks the US is considering sending fighter jets to Ukraine, McCaul replied, “I hope so” and underscored his concerns over a drawn-out conflict between Russia and Ukraine.
Turner equated the resolution to a letter more than two dozen progressive House Democrats sent the White House last fall, asking it to pursue diplomacy between Russia and Ukraine. The letter was pulled down after a short time.
“You have a handful on both sides, both sides, Pamela, who have been cautious or who have said that they don’t support, or they want support to come to an end,” he said from Munich. “There are 435 members of Congress. About 400 are for continuing this direction and the path.
The American role in launching a hypersonic missile system: “We are not going to have a Cold War,” McCaul said
There was a lot of American parts in this balloon. McCaul said the hypersonic missiles that went around the world with precision were built on the backbone of American technology.
“They steal a lot of this from us. We don’t need to sell their advanced weapons systems to them so that they can turn against Taiwan in the Pacific or possibly the United States of America. I think there is bipartisanship on this issue.
McCaul said that there was a high degree of tension between the two countries and that Democrats and Republicans were in agreement in wanting to confront Chinese threats.
McCaul said that he believes there is an opportunity to be bipartisan on the matter of national security against one of the greatest threats to this country.
No one wants a cold war, that is the issue. What we want is a China that is not going to be an aggressor state, that’s not going to be building up its military and threatening the United States, and certainly not making the negative comments that it’s making instead of just openly apologizing for sending a spy balloon over our most sensitive military sites,” Turner said.