Putin’s massive aerial attack backfires

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Russian President Vladimir Putin‘s massive aerial attack has only further strengthened Western support for Ukraine, with several NATO members reaffirming their alliance to Kyiv’s forces.

Ukraine officials said that Russia launched approximately 110 missiles overnight Friday, striking civilian infrastructure and military facilities across the country. At least 32 civilians were killed, and Ukrainian Defense Minister Rustem Umerov called it the “most massive air attack of this war.”

In the aftermath, Western allies rushed to support Kyiv, whose defense against Russia’s invasion has depended on military aid by NATO and European Union members. President Joe Biden released a statement Friday, saying that the air attack was “a stark reminder to the world that, after nearly two years of this devastating war, Putin’s objective remains unchanged.”

“He must be stopped,” the president added, who also urged Congress to pass additional aid for Ukraine.

Putin’s Massive Aerial Attack Backfires
Ukrainian residents on Friday stand near a damaged school that was struck in Russia’s massive airstrikes. Several Western allies have rushed to show their support for Ukraine in light of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s largest aerial attack on Ukraine.
OLEKSANDR GIMANOV/AFP via Getty Images

U.K. Defense Minister Grant Shapps also announced rapid efforts to bolster Ukraine’s air defense in light of “Putin’s murderous air strikes,” including providing hundreds of air defense missiles intended to help restock the British-provided systems already in Kyiv’s possession.

“Putin is testing Ukraine’s defense and the West’s resolve, hoping that he can clutch victory from the jaws of defeat,” Shapps said in a statement shared to X, formerly Twitter. “But he is wrong … Today’s air defense package sends an undeniable message, in the face of Russian barbarity that the UK remains absolutely committed to supporting Ukraine.”

Germany’s Foreign Affairs Ministry also condemned Russia’s attack in a post to X, adding that “Even in 2024 we won’t move an inch away from the [Ukraine] side.” Poland’s Foreign Ministry issued its “solidarity and support to the victims and their families” impacted by the airstrikes, and called on “the Kremlin to stop their criminal actions.”

Newsweek reached out to Russia’s Foreign Ministry via email for comment Friday.

The statements of support come at an imperative time for Kyiv, which is at risk of losing its American military aid in light of wrangling between U.S. Democratic and Republican lawmakers. GOP congressional members have blocked providing Ukraine with any additional aid unless their Democratic counterparts agree to address security concerns along the U.S. southern border.

Biden has warned that withholding additional aid for Ukraine, and subsequently boosting Putin’s efforts in the war, could pose safety issues for the U.S. and all NATO members.

Other European allies have also warned against the U.S. pulling away from Ukraine, including German politician Omid Nouripour, who told a Berlin news agency on Thursday that Kyiv’s allies in Europe would not be able to compensate for the potential loss.

“It is hardly possible to simply compensate for what the Americans have achieved so far, neither in terms of materials nor in terms of money,” Nouripour said.

“But of course, in this case, we Europeans will have to step up our support for Ukraine,” he added.

Uncommon Knowledge

Newsweek is committed to challenging conventional wisdom and finding connections in the search for common ground.

Newsweek is committed to challenging conventional wisdom and finding connections in the search for common ground.

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Putin’s massive aerial attack backfires

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