Democratic Connecticut Sen. Chris Murphy said Wednesday on CNN the Biden Administration has taken “real risks” in giving Ukraine “really serious” weapons systems that require copious training.
Murphy was discussing Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s surprise visit to Ukraine before host Phil Mattingly asked about aid to Ukraine.
“If support is a concern, if the need to keep the Western coalition together has been critical from day one, why not give them everything they ask for now?” Mattingly asked. “Why not – clearly, every red line that I think this administration was concerned about related to Russia and what it may trigger, they have crossed over time and have not suffered consequences that they were concerned about. Why not give them everything immediately?”
“This administration has given Ukraine everything that they need. And of course, we’re transferring weapons systems to them on a schedule that allows them to use those weapon systems. Many of these systems are really complicated. It would frankly just be irresponsible for us to hand those systems to the Ukrainians without proper training or security procedures. We want to make sure that they know how to use these weapons systems and that they don’t fall into the wrong hands,” Murphy said.
“So we have to do this on the right schedule, but I think the Biden Administration has taken some real risks in transferring to the Ukrainians some really serious systems, systems that could potentially be used in offensive operations inside Russia. Systems that potentially risk escalating the war, but Biden wants Ukraine to win. I think that’s been his north star from the beginning.”(RELATED: REPORT: Biden Admin Aid To Ukraine Amounts To Nearly $900 Per American Household)
The Biden administration sent M864 155-millimeter artillery shells, commonly known as cluster munitions, to Ukraine. The weapons have sparked backlash due to the risk posed by “dud” submunitions which could hurt civilians even after the war ends.
The Biden administration has been trying to hammer out a long-term Ukraine aid agreement with European allies in hopes of preventing future administrations from stripping aid. Several leading Republican presidential contenders have indicated they would dial down aid for Ukraine as the U.S. has spent more than $40 billion worth of weapons, equipment, training and investment. U.S. military readiness and industrial base capacity have taken a hit as a result, drawing criticism that the U.S. should be using those funds to shore up defenses as a possible conflict with China looms.