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US Senator: Failure to pass Ukraine aid could cause 'worst atrocity in history'

by Nate Ostiller and The Kyiv Independent news desk March 20, 2024 3:12 PM 2 min read
President Volodymyr Zelensky (L) and Senator Joe Manchin (R) in Washington, D.C., on Dec. 13, 2023. (Senator Joe Manchin/X).
This audio is created with AI assistance

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The failure of the U.S. to pass continued aid for Ukraine could cause the "worst atrocity in history," Democratic Senator Joe Manchin said during a summit hosted by Axios on March 19.

The U.S. Senate passed the foreign aid bill in February, but House Speaker Mike Johnson has so far refused to put it to a vote in his chamber, despite the pressure from the White House and other members of Congress.

The Pentagon was able to cobble together $300 million in funding for Ukraine earlier in March, the first such aid package in months, but defense officials warned it was unlikely to be repeated and that congressional action will be required for further aid.  

Manchin, a Democrat from solidly Republican West Virginia, has said he plans to retire at the end of the year, all but ensuring that Democrats will lose his seat.

"We can't let Ukraine go through this, if it comes through the spring and we haven't helped Ukraine, God help us," Manchin said onstage during Axios' annual What's Next Summit.

"That'll be the worst atrocity in history that your children or grandchildren be reading about that we’ve done."

Manchin's comments are the latest in a long line of warnings from American, European, and Ukrainian officials that paint a dire picture if the U.S. stops providing aid to Ukraine.  

The ongoing impasse over U.S. aid has already been credited as contributing to Ukraine's loss of the key city of Avdiivka in February.

Opinion: As an American in Avdiivka, what is Congress doing?
I am an American military veteran, callsign “Jackie,” and I am writing from Donbas in Ukraine. I am originally from Orange County, California. I served in the U.S. military for eight years, stationed in Colorado, South Korea, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Kuwait. I also worked as a contractor at the

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