Biden Doubles Down on War in Ukraine

( – President Joe Biden announced the United States would supply for the first time Ukraine with battle tanks so it can defend itself from Putin’s Russia, an effort replicated by many of America’s key European allies.

Russia invaded pro-Western Ukraine last February in a bid to restore the former Soviet empire. However, the fierce Ukrainian resistance and Western military aid have frustrated Moscow leader Vladimir Putin’s plans.

After eleven months of the war, Ukraine’s defenders have killed almost 125,000 Russian invaders in battle and have destroyed some 20,000 units of Russian military equipment.

Even so, Putin is not giving up and is increasingly mobilizing civilians to try to overwhelm the Ukrainians.

America and its allies previously abstained from giving Ukraine battle tanks out of fear that Russia could escalate the war. However, that has changed as Moscow has ramped up its war efforts.

On Wednesday, President Joe Biden announced the United States would supply Ukraine with 31 advanced M1 Abrams tanks, Newsmax reported.

The decision was coordinated with Germany, as German Chancellor Olaf Scholz had announced shortly before that his country would supply Ukraine with 14 of its top Leopard 2 A6 tanks.

While the number announced by Germany is not significant, its announcement included permission to other US allies in the NATO alliance to supply the German-made tanks to Ukraine.

As America’s European allies possess some 2,000 Leopard tanks, the German move means they can give Ukraine hundreds of top-quality tanks.

Germany has insisted the US join the tank supplies to avoid causing Russia’s wrath. Earlier another major NATO nation, Britain, had said it would donate 14 of its heavily-armored Challenger tanks to Ukraine.

The German permission backed by the United States means that nations such as Poland, Spain, the Netherlands, Norway, Denmark, Finland, and Portugal will supply various numbers of Leopard 2 and Leopard 1 tanks to Ukraine’s defenders. France announced it would provide some of its Leclerc tanks on top of lighter tanks promised earlier.

The 31 US M1 Abrams tanks will be provided to Ukraine as part of a $400 million package announced on Wednesday will also include 8 M88 recovery vehicles that can tow an Abrams if it gets stuck.

A senior US official said the United States, Germany, and other NATO allies had participated in “good diplomatic conversations” on the joint commitment to supplying Ukraine with main battle tanks.

Those have been key for the “extraordinary shift in Germany’s security policy” as the country had been sticking to pacifism due to its role in World War II.

The announcement hasn’t made it clear whether the 31 tanks for Ukraine would come from the US military’s stockpile of over 4,000 M1 Abrams or whether the US would buy new ones to send to Ukraine.

It also remains unknown how quickly the Abrams could be provided and whether they would arrive in Ukraine before an expected massive Russian offensive in the spring.

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