The President of the United States prepared an address to the Americans on the Ukrainian crisis
U.S. President Joe Biden was about to speak on Thursday, April 21, with a speech about the situation in Ukraine. In anticipation of his speech, it was reported that the head of the White House decided to announce a new package of military assistance to Kiev against Russia.
Photo: Global Look Press
Joe Biden was about to address the Americans from Roosevelt's White House room on Thursday morning local time, and a source familiar with the planning said he is “expected to provide an update on our efforts to support Ukraine and aid that we provide.”
The new weapons package is likely to be about the same size as the $800 million package announced last week, but details are still being worked out, another US official told Reuters earlier.
The new tranche of American aid to the Kiev authorities is expected to include more artillery pieces and tens of thousands more artillery shells, which are likely to be used for fighting in the Donbass.
Earlier Wednesday, Biden convened US military leaders for an annual meeting at the White House that has taken on special significance as the conflict in Ukraine enters a new phase. Opening the meeting, Biden praised the Ukrainian military and NATO's unity.
Biden met with military leaders, including Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley, and about two dozen other military leaders and national security advisers.
“I want to hear from all of you and your assessments of what you see on the ground,” Biden told senior military officials in the White House ahead of the meeting. “The strategic environment in the world is rapidly changing, but this means that our plans and disposition of forces must be equally dynamic.”
While US forces are not fighting directly in Ukraine, in fact, Washington is indirectly participating in the conflict on the side of Kyiv, arming, training and funding Ukrainian forces.
The US military aid announced last week included artillery systems, artillery shells, armored personnel carriers and coastal defense drones. Washington is expanding aid to Kyiv with new types of heavy equipment.
If this week's aid package is as large as expected, total US military assistance to Ukraine after the start of the Russian military operation will be more than 3 billion dollars.
After Biden's announcement, he is due to fly to the US Pacific Northwest on a two-day trip to advance his domestic agenda.