Biden Rains On Putin’s ‘Victory Day’ With Big Boost For Ukraine

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The Biden administration is keeping up its support of Ukraine’s military amid the country’s efforts to beat back the unfolding Russian invasion. On Monday — observed in Russia as Victory Day, commemorating the World War II-era victory over the Nazi regime — Biden signed sweeping legislation that boosts the capacity of the U.S. to provide further assistance to Ukraine’s defenders.

As explained by The Washington Post, the bill means the U.S. “will be able to more quickly provide equipment and other supplies to Ukraine during the ongoing Russian invasion, as the bill enhances Biden’s authority to expedite agreements with Ukraine and other Eastern European countries.” It passed the Senate with no opposition and prevailed in the House with just 10 Republicans voting against it. The similarities between the Nazi regime and the Putin-led government in Russia aren’t acknowledged, of course, by those actually in power in Moscow — they’ve cast themselves as crusaders against Nazism, and Putin participated on Monday in celebrations of “Victory Day.” Biden’s re-affirmation of the U.S. commitment to backing Ukraine provides a fitting reality check to Putin’s delusions.

Biden said:

‘The bill demonstrates that support for Ukraine is pivotal at this moment. Every day, Ukrainians pay with their lives, and they fight along — and the atrocities that the Russians are engaging in are just beyond the pale. And the cost of the fight is not cheap, but caving to aggression is even more costly. That’s why we’re staying in this… Today, Europe is honoring another important day on the anniversary. On May 9th, 1950, just years after the end of World War Two, Europe began to work to strengthen the bonds of unity among the nations, particularly the economic unity and the shared economic prosperity. The idea ultimately grew into what is now a 27-nation European Union — an economic powerhouse and a global force for peace and close partners of all — on all the issues we face.’

“It’s something that is good for everyone,” the president said. “It brings these countries together in ways… and they cooperate closely economically. They also cooperate in other ways. And you’ve seen it in their support for Ukraine. And with Putin’s war once more bringing wanton destruction into Europe, and to reaffirm the enduring commitment to the future grounded in democracy, human rights, and peaceful resolution to disagreements, I’m now going to sign this bill. And again, I thank my colleagues who are standing behind me. Because it really matters. It matters.”

“You are fighting for the Motherland, for its future, so that no one forgets the lessons of World War Two. So that there is no place in the world for executioners, castigators and Nazis,” Putin said in a Monday speech to Russians. In Ukraine, Russian forces have devastated the civilian population — tens of thousands are believed to have died in Mariupol alone. In the administrative jurisdiction around the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv, over 1,200 dead civilians have been recovered, many of whom were shot. Civilian infrastructure across Ukraine has been targeted by Russian troops throughout the course of the currently unfolding war — Russians recently struck a school where some 90 people were taking shelter in the settlement of Bilohorivka, and some 60 people are believed to have died. A March strike on a theater in Mariupol where many were sheltering was recently estimated by the Associated Press to have killed some 600 people. In other words, it’s Russian forces who are the “executioners.”