Our Ukraine and Russia Policies Should be Separate
Plus: GOP Hypocrisy and Lies About the Armed Forces.
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THE BIDEN ADMINISTRATION’S decision-making during Russia’s war against Ukraine has been criticized for being erratic, slow, overly risk-averse, and internally inconsistent. President Joe Biden’s rhetoric appears to back Ukraine to the hilt, yet his administration’s actions have focused more on comforting traditional allies and managing perceived escalation than on actually helping the Ukrainians win in the quickest—and therefore most humane—fashion. The explanation of these inconsistencies can be found in a fault that the Biden administration shares with most of its recent predecessors: It doesn’t really have a plan for Ukraine. It has a Russia policy, but not a Ukraine policy.
After the collapse of the Soviet Union, the United States had great expectations for its relationship with Moscow. But its relationship with Kyiv was more complicated: While supportive of Ukrainian independence, Washington made it clear that its relationship with Kyiv was less important than Russo-American cooperation.
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WILLIAM SALETAN: Culture Warriors: GOP Hypocrisy and Lies About the Armed Forces.
OVER THE PAST DECADE, the Republican party has turned its back on everything it once claimed to stand for. The party of “law and order” has smeared prosecutors, attacked the justice system, and called for defunding federal law enforcement. The party of “limited government” has tried to use state power to punish companies for their political views. The party of American leadership is increasingly leaning toward abandoning Europe to a Russian invasion. The party of “family values” is backing a rapist for president.
To that list, add one more betrayal: The party of “national security” is subordinating military readiness to snowflake cultural sensitivities. Specifically, Republicans are demanding that military personnel who refused orders to get vaccinated against COVID during the pandemic—and were discharged for their defiance—should be reinstated with back pay.
🚨 OVERTIME 🚨
Come join our Debate Substack Chat! And join us live on YouTube! Are you subjecting yourself to the debate tonight? So are we! Come talk on Substack Chat as we watch what might be Ron’s only big debate! David Frum offers this brief preview guide. While some conservative groups, like the Heritage Foundation, are running ads (and losing top staff because of it) urging Republicans to abandon Ukraine, you might see some familiar faces (yours?) in the Republicans for Ukraine ad. Other groups are joining in to support Ukraine, too.
A lot of tonight is likely to be about Ukraine.
And after the debate, come join JVL and Tom Nichols as they break down the consolation prize debate. As Mark Leibovich observes: “Ideally, a debate features participants who actually want to win.” Tonight will show if somebody, anybody, wants that, or if they’re auditioning to play second fiddle.
Undercover With the New Alt-Right… Amanda Moore writes: “For 11 months, I pretended to be a far-right extremist. I discovered a radical youth movement trying to infiltrate the Republican Party.”
Rudy Giuliani… needs your money.
What happens… To all the stuff we return?
They can’t shoot down Ukrainian drones, but… They can shoot down Yevgeny Prigozhin, apparently.
Biden may soon face impeachment for… [reason TBD].
Today is National Poll Worker Day! One way you can serve Democracy is by signing up to staff the polls!
Meanwhile, at Rumble, an RNC debate partner… RNC debate ads are being placed on pro-Hitler videos. Yikes.
The secret weapon hackers can use… To dox anyone in America for about $15.
Rep. Jamaal Bowman has a plan to blow the 2024 election for Democrats… His advice? Put #TheSquad front and center.
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