U.S. Pledges $1 Billion in Aid to the Ukraine – Prudent Move? [POLL]
Didn’t it seem like the crisis in the Ukraine just popped up in front of us without any warning?
Truth is, there were probably signs it was happening all along – it’s just that we weren’t paying attention.
But now that Russia has stepped up its military actions in Crimea, some analysts are calling for a U.S. response in whatever form – primarily economic sanctions.
Now we come to find out that the Obama administration has pledged 1 billion dollars in economic and energy aid as part of our response to the growing crisis.
This would be done to prop up the pro-Western government in the Ukraine and help bolster their sagging economy.
Should we be involved – and for a country that has an ongoing budgetary deficit like we do – how do we even come to pledge aid of any kind to another war-torn part of the world?
The Obama administration announced $1 billion in economic and energy aid to Ukraine on Tuesday, part of its emerging response to Russian military activity in Crimea.
President Obama, aides and allies are also considering a number of economic sanctions against Russia for its incursion into the Crimea region.
The administration announced the assistance package for Ukraine as Secretary of State John Kerry landed in Kiev early Tuesday for talks with the new government.
Treasury Secretary Jack Lew said the United States has been working with allies on a package to "help the Ukrainian government implement the reforms needed to restore financial stability and return to economic growth."
In a statement, Lew stressed the need for continuing reform in Ukraine: "The United States is prepared to work with its bilateral and multilateral partners to provide as much support as Ukraine needs ... if the new government implements the necessary reforms."
In terms of punishing Russia, Obama's options include freezing assets, visa bans, and trade and investment penalties.
The Obama administration has suspended military cooperation and bilateral trade talks with Russia, and discussed boycotting a Group of Eight nations summit that President Vladimir Putin is expected to host in June in Sochi.
"The steps Russia has taken are a violation of Ukraine's sovereignty, Ukraine's territorial integrity," Obama said Monday. "They're a violation of international law."
In televised remarks Tuesday, Putin said he reserves the right to protect Russian-speaking people in Ukraine in the wake of what he called "an anti-constitutional" coup that toppled a pro-Russia president.
Putin, who said that full military force is a "last resort," added that he would not be deterred by economic sanctions from the West.
Some are comparing Putin’s actions to those of Hitler at the outset of World War II, when the bulk of the western world did little to stop him.
For that reason, some are calling for sanctions of whatever kind against the Russian leader, and that might include some sort of military action.
Given the fact that our country is overextended in our military commitments as well as economically, should we be involved in the crisis in the Ukraine.?