Milley Calls Ukraine ‘Important National Interest’; GOP Contenders Say Otherwise

Milley Calls Ukraine ‘Important National Interest’; GOP Contenders Say Otherwise

March 27, 2023

During a hearing on Wednesday, woke Gen. Mark Milley called Ukraine “an important national interest” of the United States, contradicting the views of the top 2024 Republican presidential contenders, including former President Trump.

Asked what the strategic end state is for Ukraine, Milley said, “It’s very clear the strategic end state is the global rules-based international order that was put in place in 1945 is upheld”:

You achieve that end state when Ukraine remains a free, sovereign, independent country with a territory intact and then, you know, the rules base was upheld. If that rules-based order, which is in its 80th year, if that goes out the window — and be very careful — we will be doubling our defense budgets at that point, because that will introduce not an era of great power competition, that will begin an era of great power conflict, and that will be extraordinarily dangerous for the whole world.

Ukraine is a fight for Ukraine, that’s existential for Ukraine. But for the rest of us, it’s a much bigger and important national interest, that’s fundamental to the United States to Europe and global security.

Milley’s defense comes after Trump, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, North Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem, and entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy all said Ukraine was not a vital national interest in response to a survey by Fox News host Tucker Carlson.

A February Pew Research poll also showed that there was a decline in the share of Americans who view the Ukraine war as a major threat to U.S. interests. A month after Russia invaded Ukraine in February 22, 2022, half of U.S. adults saw Russia’s invasion as a major threat to American interests. However, by January 2023, only 35% of Americans felt the same.

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