Politico: Biden Admin 'Quietly Shifting Strategy' in Ukraine, Prepping for Negotiations

Chris Menahan
Dec. 28, 2023

After issuing endless pledges to stand by Ukraine for "as long as it takes," the Biden administration is dropping Ukraine like a hot potato to put the interests of Israel first.

From Politico, "The Biden Administration Is Quietly Shifting Its Strategy in Ukraine":
With U.S. and European aid to Ukraine now in serious jeopardy, the Biden administration and European officials are quietly shifting their focus from supporting Ukraine's goal of total victory over Russia to improving its position in an eventual negotiation to end the war, according to a Biden administration official and a European diplomat based in Washington. Such a negotiation would likely mean giving up parts of Ukraine to Russia.

The White House and Pentagon publicly insist there is no official change in administration policy that they still support Ukraine's aim of forcing Russia's military completely out of the country. But along with the Ukrainians themselves, U.S. and European officials are now discussing the redeployment of Kyiv's forces away from Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy's mostly failed counteroffensive into a stronger defensive position against Russian forces in the east, according to the administration official and the European diplomat, and confirmed by a senior administration official. This effort has also involved bolstering air defense systems and building fortifications, razor wire obstructions and anti-tank obstacles and ditches along Ukraine's northern border with Belarus, these officials say. In addition, the Biden administration is focused on rapidly resurrecting Ukraine's own defense industry to supply the desperately needed weaponry the U.S. Congress is balking at replacing.

The administration official told POLITICO Magazine this week that much of this strategic shift to defense is aimed at shoring up Ukraine's position in any future negotiation. "That's been our theory of the case throughout the only way this war ends ultimately is through negotiation," said the official, a White House spokesperson who was given anonymity because they are not authorized to speak on the record. "We want Ukraine to have the strongest hand possible when that comes." The spokesperson emphasized, however, that no talks are planned yet, and that Ukrainian forces are still on the offensive in places and continue to kill and wound thousands of Russian troops. "We want them to be in a stronger position to hold their territory. It's not that we're discouraging them from launching any new offensive," the spokesperson added.
Though Ukraine is getting cut off, Israel is getting flooded with US weaponry.

From Antiwar.com, "US Has Delivered Over 10,000 Tons of Weapons to Israel Since October 7":
Two hundred and forty-four American cargo planes and 20 ships have delivered over 10,000 tons of military equipment to Israel since October 7 to support the massacre in Gaza, Israel's Channel 12 reported on Monday.

The US support has been crucial in Israel's ability to keep up its relentless bombardment of Gaza. The Washington Post reported on December 9 that, up to that date, Israel dropped over 22,000 US-provided bombs on the Gaza Strip.

The Pentagon has refused to disclose what types of weapons it's been sending to Israel, but media reports have revealed some details. The Wall Street Journal reported on December 1 that the US had shipped 15,000 bombs and 57,000 155mm artillery shells to Israel since October 7.

The bomb shipments have included over 5,000 Mk84 2,000-pound warhead bombs, which Israel has been dropping on densely populated areas of Gaza. According to an analysis from The New York Times, during the first six weeks of the war, Israel routinely dropped 2,000-pound bombs on areas in south Gaza designated safe for civilians.

The Israeli Defense Ministry has said the US arms deliveries have also included "armored vehicles, armaments, personal protective equipment, medical supplies, ammunition, and more."
It was also reported in October that the US was planning to send Israel two Iron Dome air defense systems -- which Ukraine had been begging for for two years to no avail.

Polls have shown that Americans are significantly more supportive of the US sending military aid to Ukraine than Israel but the will of the public obviously counts for nothing.

The interests of Israel must come first.

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