William Katz:  Urgent Agenda

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DRAMATIC INCREASE IN AID TO UKRAINE – OVERNIGHT: I personally favor the aid package, but we must be careful about how deeply we become involved in Ukraine.  What happens if Ukraine starts losing, and American troops are needed?  From Fox: 

The House of Representatives has passed a nearly $40 billion bill that will aid Ukraine in its war with Russia.

The bill, which includes military, economic and humanitarian assistance to Ukraine, cleared the chamber 368 to 57. No Democrats opposed the bill.
House approves nearly $40 billion in aid for Ukraine. 

The vote was 368-57. 

All nay votes came from Republicans. 

The bill now goes to the Senate. But the Senate may not vote on the plan until next week.

On Monday, Biden urged the chamber to "immediately" consider his proposed bill as it could provide additional weapons and funds for humanitarian services in Ukraine.
"The plan was substantial in size, because the need is substantial: We must stand by Ukraine as it defends itself from Russian aggression," Biden said Monday. "The need is also urgent: I have nearly exhausted the resources given to me by a bipartisan majority in Congress to support Ukraine’s fighters."

The president said the aid "has been critical to Ukraine's success on the battlefield."

In a unique move, Biden said he did not wish the Ukraine aid to be tied up with any other packages, such as coronavirus relief, or any other agenda items that could prevent its passage.

"We cannot afford delay in this vital war effort," Biden added.

COMMENT:  Who hasn't been inspired by Ukraine's heroic defenders, and sickened by the Russian invasion, with its brutality and indiscriminate killing?  At the same time, we are now an open military ally of Ukraine.  If the Ukrainians lose, it will be a blow to our prestige that dwarfs Afghanistan.  And other allies will question the value of an alliance with the United States.  Putin knows that, and it's entirely possible that he will make the humiliation of this country his prime objective.  Will he use battlefield nuclear weapons?  Will he send the Red Army into other countries, to test us further?  These are no longer academic questions.  America is walking a fine line – to defeat the Russian invasion, yet not fall into a military trap. 

There is a familiar Chinese curse that says, "May you live in interesting times."  We are living in interesting times.

May 10, 2022