Why We Support Ukraine

Support Ukraine
Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Nancy Pelosi during a Joint Meeting of Congress with flag of Ukraine signed by the defenders of Bakhmut. Photo by the Office of U.S. House Speaker

By Justin Kempf

Why We Support Ukraine

Yesterday Volodymyr Zelenskyy delivered an address to Congress where he made his case for continued military and economic support for his country. During his time in Washington, he made the case not just for additional weapons, but also more powerful ones as well. Yet while the United States has refused some of Ukraine’s requests, it has delivered an immense amount of military and economic aid so far. Over the past year, the United States Congress has approved $55 billion and is due to approve another $45 billion this week. Moreover, polls show the American people continue to support sending Ukraine additional military and economic aid.

Americans have different reasons to support Ukraine in its defense against Russian aggression. Some are military hawks who have long believed in a strong military necessary to defend American interests. However, others have resisted American military involvement in other parts of the world. Yet they view Russia’s assault against Ukraine in quite different terms. Part of the reason is the unrestrained violence of Russia’s attacks. Russia has attacked civilians with reckless abandon. Moreover, their soldiers have committed unimaginable atrocities against Ukrainians in Bucha and other places.

Nonetheless, Americans support Ukraine more for what they have done than for what has happened to them. Ukrainians have answered Russian aggression with bravery and heroism. They resist tyranny and oppression out of a sense of duty and obligation to their country. For many it has turned our sense of democracy and freedom upside down. While rights are the consequence of liberal democracy, duty and obligation are its foundation. Alternatively, Russia offers a false sense of security and prosperity. In return it wants submission not just from Ukraine, but also from the United States and Europe. So, we support Ukraine, because they fight for our freedom as well as theirs.

About the Author

Justin Kempf manages this blog and hosts the podcast Democracy Paradox. He lives with his family in Carmel, Indiana.

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