Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy invoked some of the biggest tragedies in U.S. history as he pleaded to lawmakers for more help Wednesday.
“Remember Pearl Harbor, the terrible morning of Dec. 7, 1941, when your sky was black from the planes attacking you,” Zelenskyy said. “Remember Sept. 11, a terrible day in 2001 when evil tried to turn your cities, independent territories, into battlefields. When innocent people were attacked from the air.”
“Our country is experiencing the same every day, right now, at this moment. Every night for three weeks now,” he continued, trying to connect with Americans on what Ukraine is experiencing and reminding the U.S. what being under attack is like.
Zelenskyy reiterated his request for the U.S. to establish a no-fly zone – something the administration has repeatedly voiced opposition to. (RELATED: Biden Signs Government Funding, Ukrainian Aid Bill)
Though he continued to press for a no-fly zone, Zelenskyy acknowledged that the U.S. has nixed the request. He offered up a secondary option during his address, asking for surface-to-air missile systems that could allow Ukraine to protect its sky.
Zelenskyy also pushed for more sanctions, asking President Joe Biden’s administration that all Russian politicians be blacklisted. He pleaded with all American companies to leave the Russian market, as well.
In the middle of his address to Congress, the Ukrainian president played a video for lawmakers. The video featured a compilation of viral photographs and clips showing some of the devastation going on in Ukraine.
It included many dead women and children, bodies being thrown into mass graves, buildings being targeted and more. The video concluded with a request to “close the skies.”
Zelenskyy ultimately ended his speech with a direct plea to Biden: “Being the leader of the world means to be the leader of peace,” Zelenskyy declared.
Biden will deliver remarks a few hours after Zelenskyy’s address on Wednesday. He’ll speak on how the U.S. is providing support to Ukraine and is expected to announce $800 million more for military aid, a White House official said according to Axios.