President Joe Biden is expected to announce an additional $800 million security assistance to Ukraine today following a similarly sized measure earlier this month.
Sarah Kreps is a professor of government at Cornell University and faculty at the Jeb E. Brooks School of Public Policy whose research focuses on the intersection between technology and U.S. foreign and defense policy.
“The Russian offensive in eastern Ukraine has started just as the United States’ nearly $1 billion military assistance package is arriving in the region. This includes heavy artillery, some lethal drones, and training on how to use those weapons.
“There’s a real diplomatic dance clouded by uncertainty and yet with huge life-and-death consequences. The U.S. is saying that any material assistance to Russia from China would produce ‘strong consequences’ and yet here’s the U.S. providing hundreds of millions in that same type of military assistance to Ukraine. There’s no clear sense of what lines cross a retaliatory threshold – right now it feels a little bit like a trial and error.
“There’s a potentially optimistic story to be told here. The nuclear rhetoric is certainly alarming but since both sides have nuclear weapons, they’re both going to be monitoring what each other’s line is so that anything they do falls short of triggering something escalatory.”