U.S President Biden is asking Congress for a new $33 billion support package for Ukraine, including over $20 billion of that for military aid, which includes $5 billion in additional authority to transfer weapons and equipment to Ukraine from U.S. inventories, $6 billion for the Ukraine security assistance initiative and $4 billion for the State Department’s Foreign Military Financing program. The rest of the broad reaching aid will give $8.5 billion in direct economic assistance to the government of Ukraine and $3 billion in humanitarian and food security aid. This new package is aimed at supporting Ukraine in their war against the invasion of Russia, aimed to last as support until September of 2022. To put that military aid section in perspective, the entire Ukrainian military budget was $5.9 billion in 2021.
The latest request for aid comes after Congress approved almost $14 billion in emergency funding to help Ukraine last month, including billions to fund deployments of thousands more U.S. troops in Europe and to replenish depleted U.S. stocks of weapons shipped to Kyiv. “We need this [new] bill to support Ukraine in its fight for freedom,” Biden said at the White House. “The cost of this fight – it’s not cheap – but caving to aggression is going to be more costly.”
Biden is also seeking the ability to seize more money from Russian oligarchs and give to Ukraine in a move that can only be classified as a distorted attempt at taking a page from Robin Hood’s guidebook. The new proposal, outlined by the White House, let’s lawmakers hand Biden’s administration new capabilities which include letting U.S. officials seize more Russian oligarchs’ assets, and even give the cash from those seizures to Ukraine. As well further criminalizing sanction dodging. The steps include letting the Justice Department use the strict U.S. RICO Act (Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations) against those who dodge sanctions, RICO is a racketeering law once deployed against the mafia.