Ohio Sen. Matt Dolan: Supporting Ukraine is of vital interest to America

Published 12:00 am Monday, February 27, 2023

This week marks the one-year anniversary of Vladimir Putin’s unprovoked invasion in Ukraine. Every day since, the free world has been reminded of the powerful lessons that freedom is fragile and weakness invites aggression.

To date, the United States has given nearly $50 billion in aid to Ukraine; a figure equating to approximately .02 percent of our national GDP. 

These resources have played a pivotal role in Ukraine’s defense and the counteroffensive against Russia. Congressional oversight and accountability must go hand in hand with how Americans’ tax dollars continue to be spent. The Russian invasion is a threat to global security that requires collective defense and burden sharing between America and her allies.

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That’s exactly why other nations, particularly other NATO members, should be called upon to provide a greater degree of military, financial and humanitarian support to the Ukrainian people. 

One year on, it’s more clear than ever that defending freedom abroad requires American leadership in the world and embracing hard truths at home. 

The Biden Administration’s policies continue to give America’s adversaries reason to question our resolve. From delayed implementation of economic sanctions, to dithering on providing Ukraine with military equipment, and reducing American energy production at home, missteps continue to plague Administration’s response on the world stage. 

The United States does not have an active military presence in Ukraine. That should certainly remain the case. But let there be no mistake, stopping Russia in Ukraine is in vital interest to America’s national security. Vladimir Putin is hellbent on delegitimizing NATO and reversing the causes of freedom and self-determination established by Western democracy. 

Allowing Russia to establish a sustained foothold inside Ukraine would effectively forfeit the nation’s strategic industry and agriculture, impacting international food and energy prices, and even exacerbating the migrant crisis throughout the West. It would also invite a larger war across Europe that would drag in U.S. forces and ruin our deterrence in Asia and the Middle East.

A withdrawal of U.S. support from Ukraine would also embolden rogue regimes in China and Iran to further threaten Taiwan or even Israel. 

The United States, working in close concert with our allies, has little choice but to more effectively provide military, economic and diplomatic support for Kyiv to safeguard Ukraine’s sovereignty and send a message to authoritarian regimes that sovereign states cannot be invaded and subjected to slaughter with impunity.

May God continue to be with the free people of Ukraine and their family members here in Ohio and across the United States.

Matt Dolan is Republican who represents the Cuyahoga County area in the state Senate. He is seeking his party’s nomination for U.S. Senate in 2024. an award- winning, nationally acclaimed columnist, syndicated by Cagle Cartoons Inc.