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Politico: Zelenskyy told Johnson that without American aid, Ukraine would survive “until April”

President Zelenskyy’s bleak prediction that Ukraine would run out of weapons by March or April was a key factor behind Speaker Johnson’s decision to send military aid, despite opposition from his own party, Politico reports, citing sources.
zelenskyy johnson
President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy met for the first time with Speaker of the House of Representatives Mike Johnson in December 2023. Credit: Presidential Office
Politico: Zelenskyy told Johnson that without American aid, Ukraine would survive “until April”

According to a report by Politico, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy delivered a stark message to House Speaker Mike Johnson in December 2023, stating that without further American aid, Ukraine’s ability to withstand Russia’s renewed offensive of missiles and drones would last only “until March or April.”

“The December meeting and the bleak prognosis contributed greatly to Johnson’s decision to go against his conservative colleagues and come to the aid of Ukraine with a $60 billion aid package, according to three people familiar with the speaker’s thinking, granted anonymity to discuss internal deliberations,” Politico reported.

The meeting, which took place in Johnson’s office with a Ukrainian Ostroh Bible nearby, reportedly played a significant role in the Speaker’s decision to ultimately go against his conservative colleagues and secure a $60 billion aid package for Ukraine, per three individuals familiar with Johnson’s thinking.

The article cites eight Republican and Democratic congressional aides, lobbyists, and officials familiar with Western intelligence, who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

They revealed that Johnson’s national security adviser, Josh Hodges, played a crucial role in preparing the legislation and advocating for sending aid to Ukraine, arguing that not doing so would weaken America’s standing and empower its adversaries.

Zelenskyy’s warning provided Johnson with a deadline, which the Speaker took on as his own for the Ukraine aid package.

Johnson managed to meet this deadline with just over a week to spare, as the House passed four separate measures – for Ukraine, Israel, the Indo-Pacific, and other national security matters. President Joe Biden signed these measures into law on Wednesday, 23 April, paving the way for $1 billion in military aid, including long-range missiles, to be sent to Ukraine.

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