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Petraeus Talks Military and Ukraine

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U.S. Gen. David Petraeus | Image by Alex Wong/Getty Images

Preparing the military for an eventual conflict with China, sending aid to Ukraine, and vaccinating American soldiers should be top priorities for the U.S. military, according to retired Gen. David Petraeus.

The Senate will soon vote on the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), and former CIA director Petraeus, who served in the U.S. Army for 37 years, shared his thoughts on the priorities of the upcoming budget during an interview with Fox News.

Petraeus said the “most important” item the NDAA must consider is the relationship between the U.S. and China. He said the policy must strengthen the “will” of the military and promote the “transformation” of its capabilities.

He added that large, heavily manned military operations are “huge targets” for enemy forces, and the U.S. must consequently transition away from them.

“Keep in mind, Ukraine has validated that old Cold War adage that ‘If it can be seen, it can be hit, and if it can be hit, it can be killed,'” he said. “Think about that in a theater where everything can be seen and there are enormous vulnerabilities.”

“So, we have to be sure that we are transforming that entire theater and service capabilities … to make sure that they’re transformed in a way that shores up deterrence,” he continued. “And deterrence, of course, rests on a potential adversary’s assessment of your capabilities, on the one hand, and your willingness to employ them on the other.”

He said, “We have to ensure there is no doubt about the capabilities, and we’ve got a lot of work to do there, and this budget will help in that regard.”

Petraeus said the “will” of the U.S. is not only important in regard to China but on the rest of the world stage as well — especially Ukraine. He said support for Ukraine must be a “top priority.”

“That’s why the support for Ukraine is so important, especially coming after the withdrawal from Afghanistan to show that the U.S. can and will lead the world and it has the will to do just that,” he said. “Assistance to Ukraine, needless to say, has to be definitely one of those top three as well.”

A “staggering amount” of money has already been sent to Ukraine, according to Petraeus. The U.S. has reportedly sent more than $68 billion of taxpayer money to Ukraine already. In November, the White House asked Congress for an additional $37.7 billion, which will be considered in the spring.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), who will likely become Speaker of the House in January, has said Republicans will not write a “blank check” to Ukraine.

While Petraeus strongly supports Ukrainian aid, many Republican lawmakers disagree with his assertion that funding the nation’s war with Russia should be a priority for Congress. Concerns abound about both the lack of safeguards for how the money is spent and whether U.S. intervention risks drawing the country into a wider war.

Representative Thomas Massie (R-KY) tweeted last month, “We should immediately stop payments to Ukraine and begin a thorough audit of the $60 billion that Joe Biden and Congress have already sent there.”

“Not another penny will go to Ukraine,” said Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA).

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Ronald Reason
Ronald Reason
1 month ago

Excellent story! In the past, the Republican party has led the fight against russian tyranny and dictatorship. What happened? Continue to help Ukraine in their fight for freedom; because it is the right and moral thing to do for the security of America, and the world!

Janet
Janet
Reply to  Ronald Reason
1 month ago

What happened? The Re”bum”lican party doesn’t want to upset the Pied Piper of Mar-A-Lago and his buddy Putin.

Boukar Mina
Boukar Mina
1 month ago

In my view, i think US has done a great job of the supporting Ukraine for defending itself from the Russian unprovoked war. But Americans taxpayers need to know how theirs money is spent. It’s a common sense question? European countries also need to step in and increase their assistance to Ukraine it’s a war that is in Europe and they are more concerned than America. Even if the US is defending a sovereignty of any country in the world.