Highlights of Biden and Zelensky’s Meeting Today at the White House:
Biden welcomed Zelensky, noting on their united defense efforts, how Ukraine has struggled against 300 days of brutal war and assault in a fight for Ukraine’s right to exist as a nation as innocent Ukrainian people are targeted. Biden condemned Putin for escalating attacks on civilian infrastructure and for using winter as a weapon. He then continued to say how Ukraine inspires the world, and Americans stand by including both Democrats and Republicans, as well as our allies, to make sure Ukraine has the ability to defend itself. Especially with air defense, as Biden also mentioned new assistance in the form of Patriot air defense systems.
Zelensky thanked Biden for welcoming him, said it was a great honor to be there, and agreed they have many topic to discuss from the energy crisis in Ukraine and Europe to the battlefield. He wished appreciation from his heart and from all Ukrainian’s hearts and the entire nation to thank Biden, Americans, and all other nations for helping. Zelensky also thanked bipartisan political support in America, Congress, as well as saying there was great thanks from “our ordinary people to your ordinary people, it is hard to express how much we appreciate.”
Zelensky also mentioned his visit to Bakhmut yesterday, a HIMARS battery captain gave him his military merit award to give to Biden to show appreciation, saying the captain had attested many of his brothers on the frontlines were saved due to the arrival of HIMAR systems. Biden thanked him for the gift, saying the award was undeserved but much appreciated, asking Zelensky if he could contact him so as to give the captain an American command/challenge coin similar to the one Biden’s son Beau had gotten in Iraq.
“Zelensky sticks with his wartime uniform of military green cargo pants and sweatshirt embossed with Ukraine’s trident coat of arms,” for the meeting, wrote Christopher Miller of the Financial Times. Zelensky told Miller he wouldn’t go back to a clean shaven suit-and-tie attire until after Ukraine wins the war.