Biden's signature on the Ukraine Democracy Defense Lend-Lease Act of 2022 will make it easier for the U.S. to lend or lease military aid to allies affected by Russia's invasion of Ukraine and will result in an unbelievable number of dead Ukrainians, according to observers.
US President Joe Biden signed the Ukraine Democracy Defense Lend-Lease Act of 2022 on 9 May, the same day when Russia was commemorating the 77th anniversary of its victory over Nazi Germany in 1945. The new law will allow Biden to streamline US military aid to Ukraine by eliminating bureaucratic hurdles.
"The stated policy of the United States at this point in time is to create the conditions for a strategic Russian defeat in Ukraine, one of the goals of which is to bleed Russia dry so that Russia can never again carry out an action such as it has undertaken in Ukraine, or anywhere else," says Scott Ritter, a military analyst and former US Marine Corps intelligence officer. "This is the opposite of achieving peace. This is about promoting war. And as such, yes, the lend-lease legislation is not just adding fuel to the fire, it's pouring fuel all over the fire."
Meanwhile, there is additional dark symbolism in the Biden administration's decision to sign the bill on Russia's Victory Day, according to Dr. Matthew Crosston, professor of political science at Austin Peay State University.
"Do not forget the Lend-Lease bill is reviving a form of military aid from the Second World War, where the US was helping the UK fight Germany more readily," the professor says. "Thus, in a way, the US is sending a signal to its own people that Putin is the Hitler-like figure, exactly on the day when Russia celebrates its own victory against the actual Nazis in WWII. It is without doubt a vicious message being sent."
The Ukraine Democracy Defense Lend-Lease Act of 2022 was introduced by US Senators John Cornyn (R-TX), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Roger Wicker (R-MS), and Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) on 19 January 2022. The introduction of the legislation occurred a week before Washington gave its official response to Moscow's draft security agreement and over a month before the start of the Russian special military operation in Ukraine.
Ritter believes that US lawmakers came up with the bill out of fear of an attack from Moscow following the Western media reports about an "imminent Russian invasion" of Ukraine circulating since November-December 2021.
However, by December 2021, Kiev had amassed considerable forces along the line of contact with the Donetsk and Lugansk People's Republics. The crux of the matter is that Kiev was preparing its own full-fledged offensive against Donbass scheduled for March 2022, which Russia managed to upend, states the Russian Ministry of Defence (MoD), citing Ukrainian documents obtained during the special military operation. Dmitry Polyansky, Russia's first deputy representative to the UN, told Sky News on 9 May that the trove obtained by the MoD indicates that there were also plans to strike Russia from the territory of Ukraine.
"I believe that it has been entirely counterproductive for the US to provide any lethal military assistance to Ukraine during the past two and a half years, so the unanimous US Senate passage of this Ukraine Lend-Lease bill is unfortunate to me," says David T. Pyne, an EMP Task Force scholar and former U.S. Department of Defenсe officer. "I believe the US escalation of its undeclared war against Russia in Ukraine has been a very dangerous and risky policy for the US to pursue and just goes to add fuel to the fire."