Graham says he would back no fly zone in Ukraine if Russia uses chemical weapons

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) speaks to reporters during a press conference with other Republican senators to discuss Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on Wednesday, March 2, 2022.
Anna Rose Layden

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said he would support a no-fly zone in Ukraine if Russian forces use chemical weapons on Ukrainian residents amid its ongoing invasion of the country, The Myrtle Beach Online reported.

“If (Putin) uses chemical weapons, it destroys the international regime around chemical weapons we’ve tried to build up since World War II,” Graham told an audience at a University of South Carolina (USC) law event on Monday. “If he goes down that road, it’s an even larger war crime.”

Graham also said if the U.S. doesn’t take action to “protect Ukrainians from a miserable death,” Putin along with other authoritarian leaders would destroy world order, according to the Myrtle Beach newspaper. 

Graham said at the law event that he doesn’t favor deploying U.S. troops in Ukraine due to the country being outside of NATO’s mutual defense alliance. But he voiced skepticism that Putin would use nuclear weapons.

“He’s a murderer, he’s not suicidal,” Graham said. “If he makes that decision, I think the Russian general staff will take care of the problem.”

Graham has previously suggested that Russians should assassinate Putin. He was criticized by lawmakers in both parties for those remarks.

The Biden administration has opposed a no-fly zone over Ukraine because U.S. fighter jets and those of NATO would be charged with enforcing it. That could lead them to be asked to shoot down Russian planes. 


Tags Amy Klobuchar Dana Bash Fox News Ilhan Omar Lindsey Graham Maria Bartiromo Ukraine Vladimir Putin

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