By Charlie Kimber
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US promises a billion dollars of weaponry for Ukraine after Zelensky speech

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President Joe Biden is heading to Europe to hold a war council
Issue 2797
Ukraine's president Zelensky in green T-shirt featured on a screen as he addresses rows of besuited Congress members by video link

Ukraine’s president Zelensky told US lawmakers he wanted a no-fly zone, and lots more weapons

US president Joe Biden announced another $1 billion (£770 million) in arms shipments to Ukraine on Wednesday in response to demands from president Volodymyr Zelensky. Pouring in arms is the route towards a wider war and a more open proxy battle between Russia and the Nato military alliance.

The package includes more than £150 million sent last weekend and another £620 million in new funding. It will cover even more missiles than already supplied. The Financial Times newspaper said, “The aid package is a significant escalation by Washington and marks the first time the US has sent armed drones to the Ukrainian military.”

The decision came after Zelensky addressed members of the US Congress by video link. He invoked the 11 September attacks in the US in an attempt to press for even more armaments.

Zelensky then demanded a no-fly zone saying that Martin Luther King Jr said, “I have a dream,” and then added, “I have a need,” to protect the sky. He ignored King’s opposition to the war in Vietnam and other imperialist interventions.  

A no-fly zone would require Western forces to be prepared to shoot down Russian aircraft and missiles, thereby almost inevitably leading to a direct war between states loaded with nuclear weapons. 

Zelensky went on, “If this is too much to ask, we offer an alternative. You know what kind of systems we need.” He was talking about the S-300 missile batteries and other similar weaponry. And the US stepped up to deliver with Biden announcing the $1 billion 

The New York Times reported nauseatingly that “lawmakers are audibly sniffing back tears” during Zelensky’s speech. There was no such sentiment for those in Palestine, Iraq, Iran, Somalia, Libya, Pakistan, Yemen, Syria or all the other countries visited by US terror. 

The argument about a no-fly zone is not going away. On Tuesday, Zelensky urged Canada’s parliament to back a no-fly zone. And on Monday the parliament of Estonia, a Nato member, passed a resolution urging EU states and United Nations members to “take immediate steps to establish a no-fly zone in order to prevent massive civilian casualties in Ukraine.” Far from limiting casualties, it would clear the way for even more horrendous slaughter.

At present Biden’s administration does not want to implement a no-fly zone. But the pay-off to Ukraine is the supply of ever-more terrible weapons. And the warmongers are planning more. Biden will travel to Brussels in Belgium next week to participate in an extraordinary Nato summit at its headquarters. Biden and the alliance’s 30 member countries will “discuss ongoing deterrence and defence efforts as well as reaffirm our ironclad commitment to our Nato allies,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said on Tuesday.

Already other European countries are following Biden’s lead. In another reckless escalation towards the possibility of nuclear war, the German government has announced it will buy US-made F-35 fighter jets capable of carrying nuclear weapons. It is the first major defence deal since the recent decision to pump £90 billion into the country’s military. US nuclear weapons are stationed at Buchel, in the west of Germany, as part of Nato’s “nuclear sharing” arrangement.

The anti-war movement has to organise now against this stampede towards a more terrible slaughter.

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