Prof. ST Hsieh
Director, US-China Energy Industry Forum
October 24, 2022
Today, the Russia-Ukraine war enters the nineth month. Zelensky is leading his country into a dark and cold winter but refuses to take any step toward an end. Today he boasted that “Ukraine is destroying worlds second army” Unfortunately, his homeland is being destroyed along the way.
He is caught between a rock and a hard place. He cannot show any sign of retreat with a badly broken country. On the other hand, US and Europe nations say the “future of the war” is in the hands of Ukraine. Sadly, Ukraine people are not able to make any call.
But people in Europe are already staging protests on the streets against their own governments for the war induced energy shortage and hardships this winter. The ensuing economic crisis will last for a while. Even though politicians in Europe are unwavering in support the war in Ukraine, Europeans will make their own decisions soon.
The US is the major driver in this Ukraine war and has had the support of the public. But, after nine months, Biden administration still does not have any exit strategy. The justifications for supporting Ukraine when the war broke out on February 24, 2022, are still valid but now the ground is shifting.
“I am worried about it because they said they would cut it,” Biden said. Look at the public opinion poll result that “Overall, 42 percent of respondents believe that the U.S. has an obligation to help Ukraine,” Biden should be worried, it is not only GOP would “cut it,” it is also bipartisan. Biden needs to explain why “it” should not be cut with a sound justification for keep supporting the war without any exit strategy.
Biden also needs to directly respond to the request from his own party’s call for seeking a diplomatic solution to the Ukraine war. Biden does not have to follow this own party’s call, but he should explain why and what is his strategy. Most importantly for Biden, he must convince the US public why his strategy will work and who will be responsible for implementing his strategy to end the war.
It is so unfortunate that the nineth months old Ukraine war is now caught in the US mid-term election and partisans’ politics.
Only 29 percent of GOP voters say US has an obligation to help Ukraine: poll
BY OLAFIMIHAN OSHIN – 10/24/22 8:06 PM ET
A Morning Consult poll released on Monday found that only 29 percent of registered GOP respondents believe the U.S. has an obligation to help Ukraine in its conflict with Russia.
By comparison, 56 percent of registered Democrats and 38 percent of independents believe that the U.S. has a responsibility to assist Kyiv in the war.
Overall, 42 percent of respondents believe that the U.S. has an obligation to help Ukraine, according to the survey.
When asked about relocating Ukrainian citizens to live in the U.S., 63 percent of respondents said that they support such a move, including 78 percent of registered Democratic respondents, 61 percent of independent ones and 49 percent of Republicans.
The Morning Consult poll was conducted from Oct. 22 to Oct. 23 among 2,200 respondents. The survey’s margin of error is 2 percentage points.
Support for Ukraine in its nine-month war against Russia has remained relatively strong across both U.S. parties, though cracks have begun to emerge, particularly over the issue of cost. Washington has provided Ukraine with billions of dollars in military and nonmilitary assistance this year.
House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif) said in an interview last week that Republicans will not write “a blank check” to Kyiv if they seize the majority in next month’s midterms, prompting President Biden to say he feared for the future of U.S. support.
“I am worried about it because they said they would cut it,” Biden said.
Progressive Caucus tries to clarify call for Biden to find diplomatic solution to Ukraine
BY HANNA TRUDO – 10/24/22 8:43 PM ET
The Congressional Progressive Caucus on Monday evening sought to couch a statement from earlier in the day requesting that President Biden shift his administration’s policies on Ukraine and start some form of negotiations with Russia.
In a move that raised questions among fellow Democrats, a group of dozens of liberal House lawmakers led by Progressive Caucus Chair Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.) sent a letter earlier in the day to the White House calling for a possible diplomatic solution to end Moscow’s unprovoked conflict with Ukraine.
“Given the destruction created by this war for Ukraine and the world, as well as the risk of catastrophic escalation, we also believe it is in the interests of Ukraine, the United States, and the world to avoid a prolonged conflict,” Jayapal wrote on behalf of the caucus. “For this reason, we urge you to pair the military and economic support the United States has provided to Ukraine with a proactive diplomatic push, redoubling efforts to seek a realistic framework for a ceasefire.”
Several hours after the letter, which was first reported by The Washington Post, was released, the caucus sent a rare follow-up statement intended to fine-tune their original message.
“In a letter to President Biden today, my colleagues and I advocated for the administration to continue ongoing military and economic support for Ukrainians while pursuing diplomatic support to Ukraine to ensure we are helpful partners on efforts to reach ‘a solution that is acceptable to the people of Ukraine,” wrote Jayapal.
“Let me be clear: we are united as Democrats in our unequivocal commitment to supporting Ukraine in their fight for their democracy and freedom in the face of the illegal and outrageous Russian invasion, and nothing in the letter advocates for a change in that support.”
The initial correspondence was met with skepticism from some Democrats who questioned Jayapal’s leadership and motivation for calling for a new strategy. She sought to tweak her caucus’ stance, reaffirming her commitment to Biden’s foreign policy at a time when the party is facing divides over ideology and messaging on a number of fronts ahead of next month’s midterm elections.
“Diplomacy is an important tool that can save lives — but it is just one tool,” she wrote. “As we also made explicitly clear in our letter and will continue to make clear, we support President Biden and his administration’s commitment to nothing about Ukraine without Ukraine.”
The letter comes just two weeks from Election Day, as Democrats struggle to find an economic message that resonates with voters. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the ongoing war has had a ripple effect on the U.S. economy and Americans’ daily lives, including through higher fuel prices.