Former NATO ambassador: New US military aid to Ukraine ‘can make a real difference’

Former U.S. Ambassador to NATO Doug Lute said on Sunday that the latest U.S. military aid package to Ukraine “can make a real difference” as Ukrainian forces battle invading Russian troops. 

During an appearance on ABC’s “This Week,” moderator Martha Raddatz asked Lute about the Biden administration sending another $800 million in military aid to Ukraine.

Lute referred to the aid package as a real difference maker, adding that it will close the “quantitative gap” between the two sides. 

“That can make a real difference because this begins to close the quantitative gap between the Ukrainians and the Russians. In fact, some estimates are now that the Ukrainians have as many tanks on the battlefield as the Russians,” Lute told Raddatz. 

“If not more, right?” Raddatz asked. 

“If not more,” Lute, a retired U.S. Army lieutenant general, responded. 

“Now, the reality here is that many of the tanks that Ukrainians now have are the ones deserted or abandoned by the Russians,” he said. “So this imbalance in quantitative factors like tanks and artillery and so forth is beginning to get righted in the in the favor of the Ukrainians.” 

President Biden announced Thursday that the U.S. would send another $800 million military aid package to Ukrainian forces fighting Russian troops in the Donbas region of eastern Ukraine. 

Lute on Sunday also said that Russian President Vladimir Putin is looking at more opportunities to capture other cities and areas in Ukraine after Russian forces abandoned an attempt to take Kyiv earlier this month. 

“I think they’re still looking for opportunities to figure out what their goals are. They’re sort of making it up as they go along,” Lute said. “Putin is trying to access what might be possible. He’s looking for opportunities and he’ll grab the first good one available. Right now there don’t seem to be many good opportunities for Vladimir Putin.”

Tags ABC News ABC News Biden Douglas Lute Douglas Lute Kyiv Martha Raddatz Martha Raddatz NATO Russia-Ukraine conflict Russia-Ukraine conflict Ukraine Vladimir Putin Vladimir Putin
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