Poroshenko Came To Washington Asking For Help And Got Nothing Plenty of applause and expressions of solidarity. But no weapons to fight against the Moscow funded insurgents

WASHINGTON – Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko’s speech to the US Congress got lots of applause and several standing ovations. Here is the courageous head of a state engaged in a heroic battle against super bandit Vladimir Putin. The Ukrainians are bravely resisting, trying to preserve their country. And American lawmakers cheer them and their leader.

Asking for military help

Poroshenko came to Washington begging for help. This should be the right place. After all, America’s stated mission is to protect democracies, uphold the rule of law, and fight against aggression.

Well, may be so, in a rather broad sense. But, in this specific case of Russian aggression against Ukraine, the answer is no. America is not prepared to engage in a real confrontation with Russia, even if what is at stake here are truly basic principles of international law, principles almost casually disregarded by Vladimir Putin.

Verbal support

Sure enough, America will cry foul. Samantha Power, the very  articulate US Ambassador to the United Nations, can and will present cogent and persuasive arguments against Russian aggression while speaking at the UN Security Council. And Obama can and will issue public condemnations, pointing out how Russia’s outlandish behavior cannot be endorsed by any civilized country. All well and good. But this is mostly hot air.

The point is that president Poroshenko would like to get real military support –weapons– from the US and from other law-abiding Western countries. But it is abundantly clear that he will get nothing.

What is most amazing is that this late in the game Poroshenko has failed to grasp any of this. He keeps asking what he is not going to get.


And so we witness a sorry spectacle of true hypocrisy. Poroshenko just got a warm welcome in Washington. He gave a passionate speech to assembled Senators and Representatives, often interrupted by roaring applause and standing ovations. Obama received him at the White House, saying with a stern expression that America is here to assist Ukraine in this supreme hour of need.

And then…well, then nothing. Obama promised a bit of economic aid, and some non lethal equipment for the Ukrainian armed forces. And that’s it. Poroshenko commented (bitterly) that it is nice to receive American blankets; but you cannot fight a war with blankets. Indeed. But that’s all he gets.

Face reality

Time for Ukraine to face reality. The attempt to preserve its territorial integrity against a Moscow-funded and supplied insurrection may be noble. However –absent substantial Western military assistance, and absent an American willingness to engage in a real, all out confrontation with Moscow– this endeavor is real folly.

Ukraine is an impoverished country with a third-rate economy. On top of that, it depends on Russia (its foe) for most of its energy. And Ukraine is clearly alone in this fight.

Accept defeat, focus on economic reconstruction

As humiliating as this may be, it is time for Ukraine to give up. Let the mostly Russian speaking Eastern Provinces go.

Yes, this is called defeat. But by finally accepting this bitter reality, the Kiev government will have a chance to refocus its attention and energy on fixing a devastated economy further impoverished by a costly and totally useless war.

, , , ,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *