House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said Monday that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine warrants the “strongest possible military response” and that the US shouldn’t be deterred by warnings from Russia.
Pelosi made the comments from Poland a day after a trip to Ukraine, where she met with Ukrainian President Voldymr Zelensky in Kyiv. The House speaker received a warm reception from Zelensky, who presented her with the Order of Princess Olga, a Ukrainian civil decoration presented to women who make contributions to the Ukrainian state.
On Monday, Pelosi held a meeting with Polish President Andrzej Duda in Warsaw to discuss the US and NATO’s increasing support for Ukraine. Poland has emerged as one of Europe’s strongest supporters of Ukraine and recently sent over 200 Soviet-designed T-72 tanks to the Ukrainians in an escalation of NATO military aid.
On top of the military response, Pelosi said the “strongest sanctions” are also necessary “to make the case” that Russia’s war was not tolerable. “We shouldn’t do anything less because of a threat from Russia,” she said.
The US military response to the war has involved pouring weapons into Ukraine, providing Ukrainians with intelligence to target Russian troops, and training Ukrainian forces on how to use US weapons. President Biden has repeatedly ruled out sending troops to Ukraine to fight Russia directly over the risks of starting World War III, which could quickly spiral into nuclear war.
But despite the risks, ultra-hawks in Washington are eyeing ways to get the US directly involved. Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) has introduced a bill for a new Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) that would give President Biden war powers to intervene in Ukraine if Russia uses chemical, biological, or nuclear weapons.