Before President Joe Biden’s surprise visit to war-torn Ukraine on Monday, Sen. Bob Menendez reaffirmed his solidarity with the Ukrainian people.
Menendez, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, renewed his pledge of support to the Ukrainian community and its leaders all across the Garden State, in observance of the upcoming one-year anniversary of Russia’s unprovoked and brutal attack against Ukraine during a ceremony in Hudson County Feb. 13.
The 69-year-old lawmaker expressed his desire after this war is concluded that Russian President Vladimir Putin and his cronies will ultimately be held accountable for the numerous atrocities they’ve committed against innocent Ukrainian civilians, as mandated under the Geneva Convention regarding “war crimes.”
Menendez Reaffirms Support for Ukraine
“One year ago, the maternity ward in Mariupol was filled with healthy newborn babies and their mothers. One year ago, children ran through the playground in Shevchenko Park in the heart of Kyiv,” said Menendez. “But…one year later—all that has changed when Vladimir Putin, in his fantasy of restoring the Soviet empire, decided that Ukrainians should be part of Russia.”
“He decided to deny Ukraine’s own unique history and on February 24, 2022, he attacked Ukraine. He has recruited Russian criminals to fight in his army, unleashed wave after wave of missile attacks targeting civilians and critical infrastructure, and with his invasion, he has forced more than 8 million Ukrainians to flee their country and seek refuge,” he said.
Russia Weaknesses Exposed
Sen. Menendez said the invasion has shown the world just how strong Ukrainians are and how weak Putin is.
“As so many of the people we have here today can attest, the Ukrainian spirit has not been broken,” he commented. “There is no silver lining to this, but I do believe, like you, that Ukraine will win this war. Like you, I believe it must win this war. So let us continue fighting for Ukraine. Let us defend Ukrainian sovereignty and Independence.”
As Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Sen. Menendez has been a strong advocate in providing the necessary military aid needed in countering Russia’s brutal aggression against Ukrainian sovereignty.
Leading Voice in Senate
Last month, the committee held a hearing titled “Countering Russian Aggression: Ukraine and Beyond,” during which the Senator reiterated that it is critical for the U.S. and its democratic allies to show authoritarian regimes of the world that the invasion and subjugation of free peoples is unacceptable.
Since the unprovoked Russian invasion almost year ago, Menendez has been a leading voice within Congress for continued aid for Ukraine in the face of opposition from some in the GOP. He has spearheaded a bipartisan effort in approving billions of dollars in both military equipment and financial assistance, for the beleaguered war-torn nation.
Menendez has also been a key player within the Biden camp in rallying the free world around Ukraine, and successfully led the process for ratifying the NATO ascension protocols for Sweden and Finland.
The highly secretive visit this week by President Biden comes at a crucial time for Ukraine, as Russia prepares for an expected Spring offensive against its Slavic neighbor hoping to retake territory. Besides the visit to Ukraine, the President has meet with members of NATO to rally support to continue backing Ukraine and against Russia.
The administration has promised another half-billion dollars in new assistance, saying the package would include more military equipment, such as artillery ammunition, more javelins and Howitzers.
During a speech in Poland on Feb. 21, President Biden repeatedly blamed Putin for dragging Europe back to brutality on a scale not seen since World War II, accusing the Russian leader of wide-ranging atrocities and called on the world to stand up to him and other tyrants. “Autocrats only understand one word: No, no, no,” Biden declared. “President Putin chose this war. Every day the war continues is his choice. He could end the war with a word.”
Rep. Rob Menendez said the Biden Administration has united the U.S. and its allies across the world in support of the Ukrainian cause, highlighted by Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s address to Congress in December 2022.,
Ukrainians in North Jersey
“Nearly a year after Vladimir Putin began his illegal invasion of Ukraine, the Ukrainian people have shown to the world time and time again their courage and resilience,” said Rep. Menendez. “While the ultimate goal is for every Ukrainian to return home to a free Ukraine, I am proud that our communities, including those here in New Jersey’s Eighth Congressional District, have welcomed so many Ukrainian refugees displaced by the war as our neighbors.
The younger Menendez said the U.S. must continue to work to accommodate and assist displaced Ukrainians in the United States through TPS, the U4U program, and other programs to allow them to remain in the United States.
“I am proud to continue to stand with President Zelenskyy and the people of Ukraine in their effort to repel Putin’s invasion and to keep Ukraine free for future generations of proud Ukrainians,” he said.
After concluding his remarks, the Senator along with a number of dignitaries walked towards the waterfront, where they placed a wreath on the pier and sunflowers in the water of the Hudson River, in memory of the roughly 7,500 civilian deaths during Russia’s invasion of Ukraine beginning on February 24, 2022.
Not a single cent of US tax money should be sent to Ukraine. There is no US interest there. The fact that the US gov is involved in Ukraaine at all is a crime.
NATO should be abolished and replaced with nothing.
The entire war over there is a giant money laundering scheme for the democratic party and republican connected defense contractors