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Rep. Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., Joined “Sunday Morning Futures” from Poland, where he spoke to refugees fleeing the war in Ukraine, noting the “atrocities” in the country in the midst of the Russian invasion and the “sheer strength of the Ukrainian people. ”
In the exclusive interview, GOP leader blasted President Biden for acting “too slowly” in Ukraine.
“Had Biden sent a weapon earlier, perhaps [Russian President Vladimir] “Putin would not have made the decision to enter Ukraine,” McCarthy argued Sunday. “Had Biden said he would sanction before entering, Putin might not have entered.”
“But now that the war was created and you have other countries willing to supply MiGs to Ukraine to defend themselves in their own air,” he continued. “[Ukraine is] not to ask American men and women to fight, the only thing they are asking for is to have the weapons to defend themselves against an aggressor who goes in and kills women and children, innocent individuals, and there must really be consequences for Russia action. “
He then stressed that what the United States must do “is provide Ukraine with the weapons it needs to win this war.”
The United States and NATO on Thursday promised to increase support for Ukraine amid growing concerns that Russia is launching a major offensive in Ukraine’s eastern Donbas region, but officials have remained their mother on what type of weapons they will send to Kiev.
As an organization, NATO has refused to send troops or weapons to Ukraine or impose a no-fly zone over it to prevent the transatlantic group from being drawn into a broader war with nuclear-armed Russia. However, the individual NATO countries have supplied some weapons to Ukraine as well as equipment and medical supplies.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg declined to say which countries were increasing supplies or what exactly they could send to Ukraine, but said: “Be assured that Allies supply a wide range of different weapons systems, both Soviet-era systems but also modern equipment. “
Washington has provided more than $ 1.7 billion in aid since the invasion began in February and more than $ 2.4 billion since January 2021.
A White House spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Fox News.
However, Foreign Minister Antony Blinken said last week that “the nauseating images and stories coming out of Bucha and other parts of Ukraine” have strengthened the West’s willingness to punish Russia and increase support for Ukraine.
Blinken said the United States “is looking across the board right now not only at what we delivered and what we continue to deliver, but at whether there are additional systems that can make a difference.”
McCarthy stressed on Sunday that Ukraine needed the weapons “in advance, and that is a lesson we should learn in the long run.”
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“Remember, before the sanctions, the president said that just threatening the sanctions will stop Putin, and as soon as Putin enters Ukraine, the president says the sanctions will take a long time to work,” he told Bartiromo.
President Biden suggested late last month that sanctions were not intended to deter Putin’s actions, and now told reporters that “sanctions never deter.”
“Sir, deterrence did not work. What makes you think that Vladimir Putin will change course based on the action you have taken today,” Biden was asked by CBS reporter Christina Ruffini during a press conference at a NATO summit in Brussels, Belgium.
“Let’s get it straight. You remember that if you covered me from the very beginning, I did not say that sanctions would actually deter him. Sanctions never deter. You keep talking about it. Sanctions never deter, Biden replied.
Biden’s remarks came after weeks of messages from key Biden administration officials – including Vice President Kamala Harris and Foreign Minister Antony Blinken – who claimed sanctions against Russia were intended to deter Putin’s actions.
On Sunday, McCarthy stressed that “the first thing that works is a country that is capable of defending itself.” He then argued that the United States should “look to the future” and learn how the United States can “ensure that we do not make this mistake again.”
McCarthy also argued that the Biden administration “should provide Taiwan with weapons to defend itself so that China does not get the idea to enter Taiwan.”
“This is the lesson to be learned,” stressed McCarthy, who heads a congressional delegation to Eastern Europe.
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“Anyone who can see the refugees who are here, the millions of refugees from old to young who sleep on floors with Poland opening their homes and others they do not want to leave Ukraine. They want to defend Ukraine,” he continued. he, speaking from Warsaw.
“They did nothing wrong. And Putin went in and now kills innocent women and children in a cruelty we have not seen in decades since World War II.”
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“And there really must be consequences for the actions that Russia has taken in this situation, and the world should unite around it,” he stressed.
EU member states such as Poland and Romania, the two neighbors to Ukraine, have received the most refugees. Of the more than 4 million refugees who have fled Ukraine, over 2.4 million have crossed into Poland. While many have traveled throughout Europe, many refugees have stayed in Poland, which offers free temporary accommodation, medical care, education and some social services.
Fox News’ Caitlin McFall, Kyle Morris and The Associated Press contributed to this report.