Foreign aid allows us to isolate war and conflict away from our shores

I recognize it has become popular for conservatives to be against aid to Ukraine and other foreign endeavors. But honestly, anyone who has bothered to understand the underlying intent of Russian President Vladimir Putin and the potential consequences of the collapse of Ukrainian statehood with Russian victory, knows it shouldn’t be so easy to turn a blind eye to their situation.

Please. Quit reading your overtly-biased conspiracy news sites and open a history book. Learning the past can help predict the future.

Could assistance to Ukraine be a waste of American money? Sure. Right now, Russian troops are firing 10 artillery shells for every one that Ukrainian soldiers fire, according to Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky, who said the funds would help recruit the manpower needed to fend off an expected Russian offensive. Nobody is saying this aid will allow Ukraine to push Russia out and reclaim all of their land

But if we give up on our ally, and Russia wins by focusing on the long game, who would be next? Poland? The Czech Republic? The Baltic states? What then for America? Could we still just ignore the situation?

An editorial in the Wall Street Journal on Monday made a point to hold to account the 14 House Republicans who voted against the four bills on the House floor that had geo-political implications.

“The unavoidable meaning of the votes is that these Members don’t believe the U.S. should support allies threatened by authoritarians on the march. Like Republicans in the 1930s who slept while Hitler and Tojo advanced, these Republicans apparently think America can sit out these fights in splendid isolation. But history suggests that if they prevail, American sons and daughters would eventually have to fight. Better to help allies who want to help themselves.”

Let’s acknowledge we cannot separate ourselves from drama and problems in other parts of the globe. Sure, make our own national defense a priority. We need increased border security. We need more redundancy and resilience in our power grid. Establishing the world’s foremost missile defense system should be part of our strategy. But isolating war and conflict elsewhere, rather than on our own shores, should also be a priority.

Thank you to the elected officials who can see beyond political gamesmanship.

Dan Thalmann is the owner/publisher of the Washington County News and is a Past President of the Kansas Press Association. He has won numerous journalism awards in many categories over the years, including multiple awards as the best mid-sized weekly newspaper in Kansas.

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