Defense and national security – US urges allies to oppose Russian annexation efforts
The US is mobilizing its allies to oppose Russian attempts to annex territory in Ukraine, something Kyiv hopes will spark more military support.
We’ll break down what’s coming. We’ll also discuss a bipartisan Senate effort to include a critical munitions acquisition fund for Ukraine in this year’s National Defense Authorization Act.
This is defense and national security, your nightly guide to the latest developments at the Pentagon, on Capitol Hill and beyond. For The Hill, I’m Jordan Williams. Subscribe here.
US mobilizes allies in the face of Russia’s nuclear threats
The US and its allies are mobilizing the international community to oppose Russian attempts to annex territory in Ukraine, in a move Kyiv hopes will spur greater military support to deal Moscow a decisive defeat on the battlefield .
Hawkish supporters of Ukraine say now is the time for the US, Europe and NATO to step up shipments of heavy artillery, tanks and warplanes to Kyiv despite Russian President Vladimir Putin’s nuclear threats.
Putin under pressure: Putin is under pressure in Russia over the misfires on the battlefield and the chaotic implementation of his mobilization order for 300,000 troops. The Ukrainian military’s impressive counter-offensive in the north-east prompted Putin to mobilize more troops, which met with negative reactions in Russia.
William Taylor, former US ambassador to Ukraine and vice president of the Russia and Europe program at the US Institute for Peace, said the news helped US efforts.
“My bet is that they [global] The response would be to double support for Ukrainians on the battlefield,” he said. “The Russians have a major manpower problem and now is the time for the Ukrainians to be reinforced with these weapons… so they can break through the Russian lines and drive the Russians out.”
A preview of what’s to come: The US and Britain have warned that what they call “sham” voting in four Ukrainian regions is an attempt to annex Ukrainian territory while justifying the war to the Russian public.
The British Defense Ministry tweeted on Tuesday that Putin is expected to use an address to the Russian parliament on Friday “to officially announce the accession of the occupied territories of Ukraine to the Russian Federation”.
“Russia’s leaders almost certainly hope that any announcement of accession will be seen as justifying the ‘special military operation’ and will solidify patriotic support for the conflict,” the ministry tweeted.
Consequences for the connection: Foreign Minister Antony Blinken said on Tuesday that the US is preparing sanctions if Russia goes ahead with the annexation.
“We are prepared and we will impose additional heavy and rapid costs on Russia for continuing the annexations,” he said during a press conference on Tuesday.
“Ukraine has the absolute right to defend itself on all its territory, including retaking territory illegally seized by Russia in one way or another,” he added. “The weapons that we and many other countries are providing have been used very effectively for this purpose.”
Israel, which has maintained strategic ties with Moscow despite its invasion of Ukraine, released a statement on Tuesday rejecting any referendum results.
For mobilization: There have been several reports of resistance to Putin’s military mobilization order, with angry protests in the far reaches of Russia, a shootout at a recruitment center in a Siberian town, and reports of long lines of military-age men trying to flee the country.
The UK on Monday announced sanctions against 92 Russian officials and entities it says are involved in running the referendums.
Read more here.
Congress adds $12.3 billion in aid to Ukraine to budget bill
Congressional appropriators have committed $12.3 billion in security and financial aid to Ukraine as part of their proposed rolling government funding decision through December 16.
The Ukraine Supplemental Appropriations Act cap is $1.4 billion below the $13.7 billion the White House has requested for Ukraine, but comes as the administration tries to slow the pace of aid it is providing Kyiv performs to maintain.
The Senate was scheduled to hold a vote at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, which, if approved, would serve as the legislative vehicle for the proceeding resolution.
Read more here.
SENATORS WANT CRITICAL AMMUNITION FUND IN NDAA
A bipartisan group of senators wants to include the Department of Defense’s proposal to include a critical munitions procurement fund in the Fiscal Year 2023 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).
The Senators, led by Sens. Jeanne Shaheen (DN.H.) and Thom Tillis (RN.C.), introduced the Promoting Readiness for Overseas Contingencies and Unexpected Responses to Exigencies (Procure) Act – which aims to ensure that the US has sufficiently critical ammunition stockpiles to support allies and partners without depleting American stockpiles.
The senators said they plan to submit the bill as an amendment to the NDAA “in the coming days.”
The co-sponsors: Shaheen and Tillis are joined by Sens. John Cornyn (R-Texas), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), Rick Scott (R-Fla.), Tim Kaine (D-Va. ), Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), and Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.).
We saw this: A provision establishing a Ukraine Critical Munitions Acquisition Fund was included as an amendment to the version of the NDAA passed by the House of Representatives in July.
This amendment, tabled by House Armed Services Committee Chair Adam Smith (D-Wash.), authorizes up to $500 million per year for a revolving fund to acquire ammunition before arms are transferred to other countries for operations in Ukraine to maintain.
Not everyone is there: Senate appropriators felt differently about the proposal than their counterparts in the armed forces.
A report accompanying the Senate Appropriations Committee’s $850 billion defense appropriation proposal says that a Critical Munitions Acquisition Fund is “narrowly focused on acquiring small quantities of specified munitions over and above those sold in the year of execution.” should be decided”.
“This approach fails to address the broader challenges of strategic investment and management of the [Defense Industrial Base] and the supply chain,” she continued.
Read more here.
Lawmakers are sounding the alarm over North Dakota land sale
Fifty-one lawmakers, in a new letter, sounded the alarm over a China-based manufacturer’s acquisition of land near a US air force base in North Dakota.
In a letter to defense, agriculture and finance ministers, lawmakers led by Rep. Carlos Gimenez (R-Fla.) called the Fufeng Group’s property purchase an “alarming development for our national security.”
The Fufeng Group has “close ties” to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), the letter said, and the acquisition of land north of Grand Forks Air Force Base puts the Chinese firm in “the ideal place to closely monitor military activities and to intercept.”
The chemical maker is reportedly planning a $700 million project for the North Dakota country, its first plant in the US.
Read more here.
READY FOR TOMORROW
- The Center for Strategic and International Studies is hosting “A Conversation with Thomas West in the Context of Afghanistan One Year Later” at 9 am.
- The Stimson Center will host a discussion on “Practical Guidance on Strengthening Arms and Dual-Use Trade Controls” at 9:00 am
- The Center for European Policy Analysis starts the second day of the CEPA Forum 2022 at 9:30 am
- The Senate Foreign Relations Committee will hold a hearing on “Keeping the Pressure on Russia and Its Trailblazers: Exploring the Scope and Next Steps for US Sanctions” at 10 a.m
- The Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing on “From Nuremberg to Ukraine: Accountability for War Crimes and Crimes Against Humanity” at 10 a.m
- The Center for Strategic and International Studies will have a conversation with HE Hoshyar Zebari at 10:30 am
- The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace will host a discussion at 11:00 am on “A pivotal moment in Ukraine”.
- Defense One will host State of Defense: Space Force at 12:30 p.m.
- The Hudson Institute will host a discussion on “Establishing and Fortifying US National Security Supply Chains” at 3:30 p.m.
WHAT WE READ
That’s it for today! Check out The Hill’s Defense and National Security pages for the latest coverage. Until tomorrow!
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