Psaki accuses Republican Senator Josh Hawley of ‘parroting’ Russian misinformation after he urged Biden to DROP support for letting Ukraine into NATO because it will hurt the bid to take on China
- The White House condemned Josh Hawley for ‘parroting’ Russian propaganda
- The Republican senator on Wednesday wrote to Secretary of State Antony Blinken to warn against backing Ukrainian membership of NATO
- Moscow has demand that Ukraine be barred from joining the alliance
- Jen Psaki accused Hawley of ‘digesting Russian misinformation’
Moscow has said cited the threat of NATO membership as one of the reasons why it has massed more than 100,000 troops close to Ukraine’s border.
And on Wednesday, Hawley wrote to Secretary of State Antony Blinken asking him to drop longstanding U.S. support for Ukraine’s eventual membership in the alliance, arguing that it would undermine efforts to counter China.
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki hit back when asked whether such comments were helpful while Russia and the West were facing off over Ukrainian sovereignty.
‘If you are digesting Russian misinformation and parroting Russian talking points, you are not aligned with longstanding bipartisan American values, which is to stand up for the sovereignty of countries like Ukraine, but others … their right to choose their own alliances,’ she said during her regular press briefing.
‘And also to stand against, very clearly, the efforts, or attempts or potential attempts by any country to invade and take territory of another country.
‘That applies to Sen. Hawley, but it also applies to others who may be parroting the talking points of Russian propagandist leaders.’
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki on Wednesday accused Sen. Josh Hawley of parroting Russian misinformation after he asked whether the U.S. was making a mistake in supporting Ukraine’s effort to join NATO – which has riled President Vladimir Putin of Russia
Russian and Belarusian servicemen have begun joint exercises close to the Ukrainian border amid a build-up of troops that the Wests fears could be a precursor to invasion
Hawley wrote to Secretary of State Antony Blinken warning that US backing for Ukrainian membership of Ukraine would undermine other strategic objectives
Her comments came soon after the Pentagon announced it was sending almost 3,000 extra troops to Poland and Romania to reinforce Eastern European allies.
Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said the aim was to send a ‘strong signal’ to President Vladimir Putin.
‘We know that he also bristles at NATO, about NATO. He’s made no secret of that,’ said Kirby.
‘We are making it clear that we’re going to be prepared to defend our NATO allies if it comes to that.’
Hawley is one of a number of conservatives who are reluctant to back Ukraine in its struggle with Russia.
Fringe figures such as Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene have suggested that Biden is backing Kiev in order to keep Ukraine from releasing damaging information about his son Hunter’s business interests there.
In his letter, Hawley said he backed sending weapons to Ukraine but asked for clarification on how future Ukrainian membership of NATO would be in Washington’s interests.
The White House was not alone in condemning Hawley’s position
‘Our interest is not so strong, however, as to justify committing the United States to go to war with Russia over Ukraine’s fate,’ he said.’
‘Rather, we must aid Ukraine in a manner that aligns with the American interests at stake and preserves our ability to deny Chinese hegemony in the Indo-Pacific.’
Sending forces to eastern Europe, he said, distracted from bigger strategic priorities.
‘Such a deployment can only detract from the U.S. military’s ability to ready and modernize forces to deter China in the Indo-Pacific,’ he wrote.
As well as the White House, some Republicans expressed their disgust with Hawley.
‘I hate to be so personal, but Hawley is one of the worst human beings, and a self-aggrandizing con artist,’ posted Rep. Adam Kinzinger on Twitter.
‘When Trump goes down I certainly hope this evil will be laid in the open for all to see, and be ashamed of.’