President Joe Biden has authorized a $350 million defense aid package for Ukraine for a total of more than $1 billion in assistance committed in the last year, and now he wants Congress to approve $6.4 billion more in new aid. The funds to aid Ukraine against its invading neighbor Russia, have many Black people on Twitter wondering why the U.S. hasn’t funded reparations.
The White House announced the $350 million package on Feb. 25.
“If Ukraine can receive immediate aid, Black people can receive reparations,” tweeted Meek Mill-itant in one of the countless tweets from Black America wondering the same thing.
The defense aid package includes anti-armor missiles, antitank Javelin missiles, small arms, body armor and various other munitions “in support of Ukraine’s front-line defenders who are facing down Russia’s brutal attack,” a senior defense official recently informed reporters.
According to a statement from Secretary of State Antony Blinken, this latest package was the third drawdown of money from the U.S. to Ukraine in the past year, totaling more than $1 billion. The secretary of state described the third drawdown as “unprecedented.”
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Biden asked that the funding designated for Ukraine’s defense be allocated through the Foreign Assistance Act, according to a White House memo.
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The U.S. had already provided about $650 million in defense aid to Ukraine in the past year, including Javelin missiles that were used to destroy Russian tanks in the past week.
The White House has also asked Congress to approve $6.4 billion in new emergency aid for Ukraine, hoping to boost humanitarian assistance to the war-torn country and shore up other allies in the region against any further Russian aggression, The Washington Post reported
“What we’re doing with Ukraine is making sure that we have humanitarian assistance to help the people; that we have lethal defense weapons going into Ukraine to the tune of $600 million for them to fight their own fight,” U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi said, Reuters reported.
If the U.S. can cough up billions for a foreign country, many in Black America are questioning why the proposed reparations bill HR40 still has yet to pass. And even if it does pass, it won’t result in reparations. It will just approve a study on reparations.
Photo: Dmytro Stasyshen, 27, of Ukraine, holds a sign to protest the Russian invasion of Ukraine during a rally in the Hollywood section of Los Angeles, Feb. 28, 2022. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)