Zelenskyy Reacts to US Ban on its Weapons Striking Russian Territory

    Zelenskyy Reacts to US Ban on its Weapons Striking Russian Territory
    Image copyright: Kevin Dietsch/Staff/Getty Images News via Getty Images

    The Facts

    • As Russia's offensive in Ukraine's northeastern Kharkiv region entered into its second week, Ukrainian officials pressed American counterparts to lift the ban on US weapons striking inside Russian territory, arguing they were hamstrung by the inability to strike Russian troops that had amassed near the border prior to the offensive.

    • On Wednesday, as US Secretary of State Antony Blinken visited Ukraine, he signaled that Ukraine may be able to use American weapons to strike inside Russia. "We have not encouraged or enabled strikes outside of Ukraine, but ultimately Ukraine has to make decisions for itself about how it's going to conduct this war," he said.

    The Spin

    Establishment-critical narrative

    When Russia was about to launch this offensive, it amassed more than 30K troops near the border, knowing they could not be targeted by the weapons Ukraine has in its possession. This US policy is hampering Ukraine's ability to defend itself and it needs to be reversed urgently.

    Pro-establishment narrative

    The US has been clear throughout this conflict that the weapons it provides are to be used to defend and take back sovereign Ukrainian territory. Allowing strikes beyond that range would lead to a dramatic escalation of the conflict, which could have many unforeseen and disastrous consequences.

    Metaculus Prediction

    Establishment split



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