Condoleezza Rice warns GOP candidates against pulling back from Ukraine: ‘These conflicts always come home’
Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice warned on Sunday that potential 2024 GOP presidential contenders who have called for the U.S. to pull back its support for Ukraine in its war with Russia should be careful with their words.
During an appearance on CBS’s “Face The Nation,” moderator Margaret Brennan asked Rice about recent remarks from former President Trump and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) criticizing the U.S. for its robust support for Kyiv.
“It is really important that whoever runs for president of the United States understands the essence of this conflict, the fact that we are defending not just Ukrainian independence, but we’re defecting a rule- we are defending a rules-based system that says might doesn’t make right, you can’t just extinguish your neighbor,” Rice told Brennan.
In a Fox News interview last week, DeSantis, who has yet to announce a White House run, said that President Biden was “neglecting” domestic issues as he traveled to Ukraine last week to mark the one-year anniversary of the conflict.
Trump too has said the U.S. should slow its aid to Ukraine and instead push for negotiations talks between Kyiv and Moscow.
However, Rice, who served in the Bush administration, said that “it is really important” for presidential candidates to understand the “essence of this conflict.”
Rice said dropping support for Ukraine would not only leave a dark legacy, but could eventually create problems closer to home.
She said U.S. citizens would live in a world where Russia had won the war in Ukraine knowing that their country could’ve done something to prevent this outcome.
“I don’t think that’s going to be a very good message for a future president to have to deliver,” Rice added.
“Because that problem will come to his desk?” Brennan asked.
“Because that problem will come to his desk — or her desk,” Rice replied, noting previous attacks on America and its military that have pulled the U.S. into global conflicts. “And I just say, just remember dates 1914, 1941, 2001, these conflicts always come home.”
Friday marked a year since Russia invaded Ukraine, which has resulted in thousands of civilian deaths, tens of thousands of military casualties on both sides, and the displacement of over 8 million Ukrainian citizens.
Biden traveled to Kyiv last Monday in a surprise trip to show ongoing U.S. commitment and announce an additional $500 million in U.S. aid to the country.
“I am thankful to the U.S. for standing with Ukraine and for our strong partnership,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said of Biden’s visit. “We are determined to work together to ensure Ukraine’s victory.”
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