WILL THE US AGAIN BE THE ARSENAL OF DEMOCRACY? A CONVERSATION ON LEND-LEASE FOR UKRAINE WITH US SENATORS BEN CARDIN AND JOHN CORNYN - The United States’ efforts to support Ukraine’s defense against Russia’s full-scale invasion have in many ways been driven by support in the US Congress. Military support for Ukraine has become a bipartisan issue on Capitol Hill, with over $14 billion appropriated since February 24, 2022 to better fund Ukraine’s defense.
Russia’s war in Ukraine and the American response to it has also revealed the imperative for the US once again to become an “arsenal of democracy.” On April 6, 2022, the US Senate unanimously passed the “Ukraine Democracy Defense Lend-Lease Act,” reviving President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s World War II-era lend-lease policy that allows Washington to more quickly send weaponry and supplies, this time to Ukraine’s democratically elected government. Russia’s renewed offensive in the Donbas region has made Ukraine’s calls for weapons systems, ammunition, and military assistance all the more urgent.
What is lend-lease and how can the US use military aid to more effectively enable Ukraine to defend itself against Russian aggression? How can Washington build on support for Ukraine to strengthen US national security?
Ambassador Paula Dobriansky, vice chair of the Atlantic Council’s Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security and former Under Secretary of State for Global Affairs, offered introductory remarks. Thomas Warrick, nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security, moderated a discussion with The Honorable John Cornyn, US senator (R-TX), and The Honorable Ben Cardin, US senator (D-MD), on lend-lease for Ukraine and the future of US assistance, with closing remarks from Barry Pavel, senior vice president at the Atlantic Council and director of the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security.
ORIGINAL AIRDATE: 04/29/2022