Last Updated: October 29, 2022, 08:37 IST
Washington, United States
No US politician has openly said that US should stop military aid for Ukraine but some Democrats and even Republicans don’t want an escalation (Image: Reuters)
Former US president Barack Obama, Democrat Pramila Jayapal and Republicans have directly and indirectly told Biden administration to keep open diplomatic channels to avoid an escalation
Former US president Barack Obama said the US should be clear on what it can and cannot do for Ukraine earlier this month. His comments came a week before a group of progressive Democrats led by Pramila Jayapal wrote to US President Joe Biden to seek engagement with Russia while continuing sanctions and military support.
“We do, however, have to be clear and honest with them about what we can and cannot do. And there are lines that we have to determine internally, the US, NATO, and others that take into account the risk of this tipping into a Russia/US/NATO conflict as opposed to a Russia/Ukraine conflict,” Obama said, according to the Intercept and Pod Save America podcast.
President Obama sort of agrees with the Progressive Caucus before they retracted the letter to the WH: “The thing I am most concerned about is that lines of communications between the Kremlin and the White House..are probably as weak as they’ve in a very longtime.” pic.twitter.com/NKlm1UwlQl
— HalalFlow (@halalflow) October 28, 2022
He further said that the “lines of communication between the White House and the Kremlin are probably as weak as they have been in a very long time.”
He, however, said that it is not the fault of the Biden administration and said Russian President Putin is isolated and “has consolidated decision-making to a degree that we haven’t seen even during the Soviet era.”
“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 and the 29 other lawmakers had written earlier this week.
It should be noted that unlike the Democrats from the Progressive wing of the party, Obama did not receive any flak. The blowback from the Democrats towards their own party members forced Jayapal and the other party members to withdraw the letter.
“The Congressional Progressive Caucus hereby withdraws its recent letter to the White House regarding Ukraine. The letter was drafted several months ago, but unfortunately was released by staff without vetting. As Chair of the Caucus, I accept responsibility for this,” Jayapal said.
According to CNN, some senior Democrats were afraid that such a move would impact their electoral chances come midterm elections. Jayapal also said that the timing of the letter may have led some to believe that she and Kevin McCarthy, House Minority Leader, are on the same page.
The Republican leader earlier this month said that there would be no blank checks for Ukraine if the GOP wins the midterm elections.
All of this indicates that there could be bipartisan support if the Biden administration wanted to use diplomatic tools to de-escalate the conflict but the US President on Friday will provide a new $275 million military assistance package for Ukraine to help it battle Russia.
Biden also remained sceptical of Russian President Vladimir Putin downplaying the fears of a nuclear standoff and said he was approaching the subject ‘dangerously.’
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