NATO Chief Backs Calls For US Weapons To Strike Hard Inside Russia

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by Tyler Durden
Monday, May 27, 2024 - 11:20 AM

Over the weekend NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg backed growing calls within the alliance to allow Ukraine to strike inside Russian territory using Western-supplied weapons.

While this has without doubt already happened, especially in Crimea and utilizing UK missiles in particular, the Biden administration has on a public level at least maintained its prohibition against Kiev launching such attacks using US-made missile systems.

But the NATO chief in an interview with The Economist said "The time has come for allies to consider whether they should lift some of the restrictions they have imposed on weapons donated to Ukraine."

"To deny Ukraine the possibility of using these weapons against legitimate military targets on Russian territory makes it very hard for them to defend themselves," Stoltenberg added.

He did not mention the United States by name, but the provocative statements came days after US House Speaker Mike Johnson spoke out against the White House's current prohibition. As things get more desperate for Ukrainian forces along collapsing front line positions, the hawks are urging a more muscular approach.

Speaker Johnson told Voice of America Wednesday that Washington attempting to "micromanage" Ukraine's defense "is not good policy for us."

He then said, "I think we need to allow Ukraine to prosecute the war the way they see fit," emphasizing "They need to be able to fight back."

In Kharkiv oblast, for example, where Russia is in the midst of a major new offensive to push the border back, Russian artillery is pummeling Ukraine forces from across the border.

While Ukraine has been launching drone and mortar attacks on the Belgorod region for months, it wants to more openly use long-range missile like the US ATACMS, with a 190-mile maximum range, to hit back harder.

The Kremlin has continued to threaten to attack any Western supplied weaponry or even NATO personnel wherever they might appear on the battlefield. Estonia has been the latest to openly call for placing Western troops in "rear" positions in Ukraine, following French President Macron's urging the alliance to be open to sending troops.