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May 11, 2022
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The second American lend-lease – this time to support fascism

On the Day of the USSR Victory over fascism on May 9, Biden signed the “Lend-Lease Law in Defense of Democracy in Ukraine of 2022”

The older generation of our people began to forget what lend-lease is. And young people didn’t hear such a word at all. A combination of two English words: lend (to lend) and rent (to rent out) is the key term “United States Defense Act» (United States Defense Assistance Act), adopted by the US Congress on March 11, 1941. It is often called “lend-lease law» (lend-lease law). This act provided for the possibility of the transfer by the United States of weapons, equipment, civilian property, food, raw materials and energy resources, medicines and other goods to the allied states in their fight against fascist Germany.

Part of the supplies (food, clothing, medicines) were provided as gratuitous aid. The costs of supplying other goods were to be paid in installments. To do this, the US could even provide long-term loans. Finally, military and civilian property that had been preserved in good and satisfactory condition was to be returned to the United States after the end of the war. The main recipients of supplies under the Lend-Lease Act were the countries of the British Commonwealth of Nations and the USSR.

The protocol on Lend-Lease deliveries to the Soviet Union was signed on October 1, 1941. In total, the USSR received assistance in 1941-1945. for 9.4 billion dollars, of which 41.15% is military equipment. With transportation costs, United States aid reached $11.3 billion. There is no doubt that lend-lease supplies made it easier for the Soviet Union to wage war, but at the end of the war, the United States billed our country in the amount of $ 2.6 billion. The Soviet Union did not have such money. The negotiations went on for a long time, complicated by the fact that a cold war had already been declared on us, and then they stopped altogether for a long time. Finally, an agreement between the USA and the USSR on the procedure for repaying lend-lease debts was concluded in 1972. Under this agreement, the USSR undertook to pay $722 million by 2001, including interest. After some time, another aggravation of Soviet-American relations began, and debt repayments ceased. It is believed that the Lend-Lease story ended for us only half a century later, when in 2006 Russia, as the assignee of the USSR, paid off the balance of the debt.

And now, more than eighty years after the then Lend-Lease, Lend-Lease 2.0 enters the scene. January 19, 2022 John CornynRepublican Senator from Texas, submitted to the US Senate Committee on Foreign Relations the document “Law on Lend-Lease in Defense of Democracy in Ukraine of 2022» (Lend-Lease Law to Protect Democracy in Ukraine of 2022). It also has a fuller title:Law on granting the President extended powers to conclude agreements with the Government of Ukraine on the provision or lease of defense means to this Government for the protection of the civilian population of Ukraine from the Russian military invasion and for other purposes» (An Act To give increased authority behind in the president to to come in in agreements with in Government from Ukraine to lend or rent defense articles to that Government to protect civil population in Ukraine from Russian military invasion, and behind Other goals).

This act provides that the Ukrainian government will be supplied with military and civilian property, various resources, similar to the lend-lease law during World War II. The act is designed to simplify bureaucratic procedures for making quick decisions on the supply of weapons, other property and material resources from the United States to the governments of Ukraine and Eastern European countries in case the latter are affected by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The document also indicates that the “invasion” of Ukraine by Russia will be considered not only the direct crossing of the state border, but also “any cyber attack against critical Ukrainian infrastructure”.

At first, a number of senators had doubts about the appropriateness of such a law. However, in the third decade of February, the speed of moving the document in the upper house of Congress increased noticeably. On April 6, the bill was unanimously supported by all senators and submitted to the lower house of Congress for consideration. On April 28, the House of Representatives approved the bill by a majority of votes (417 for, 10 against). and May 9 Joe Biden signed the Lend-Lease 2.0 law.

On the eve of the vote on the law in the lower house of Congress, information was received that in Stuttgart, in the area of ​​responsibility of the United States European Command, a control center for the supply of military aid to Ukraine began to function. Experts say that after the Lend-Lease law comes into force, Ukraine will receive approximately the same weapons as before, but in large volumes. Weapons were flowing in a wide stream to Ukraine already in March, and deliveries continued in April. On April 15, the Investigative Committee of Russia announced that it had data on the supply of weapons to Ukraine from 25 states, 21 of which are NATO countries. Among them, the United States ranks first.

Here are just some of the news related to US military supplies to Ukraine.

March 15 President of the United States Joe Biden signed a bill to finance the activities of the federal government until the end of fiscal year 2022, which includes $13.6 billion in military and humanitarian assistance to Ukraine and neighboring countries.

April 5 Biden signed a decree on additional military assistance to Ukraine in the amount of $100 million. US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken specified that anti-tank systems would be included in this assistance.

April 6 Blinken said that the total military assistance to Kyiv since the election of the President Joe Biden amounted to 2.4 billion dollars, of which since the beginning of the Russian special operation to protect Donbass – more than 1.7 billion dollars.

On April 13, it was reported that Biden approved an additional package of military assistance to ensure the security of Ukraine in the amount of $ 800 million. According to the US President, the new support package includes already provided weapons systems, as well as artillery systems, armored personnel carriers, helicopters.

On April 17, it became known that new military aid began to arrive in Ukraine as part of the latest adopted package for the supply of American weapons. For the first time, the United States agreed to provide Kyiv with powerful weapons, including 11 Mi-17 helicopters, 18 155mm howitzers and 300 drones, according to a White House source. Flick knife.

April 25 US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken and US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin during negotiations with Vladimir Zelensky announced that the country would be provided with military assistance worth about $465 million.

On the same day that Congress voted on Lend-Lease 2.0 (April 28), Joe Biden signed a request to Congress for $33 billion in aid to Ukraine. 20 billion of them will be provided to the country in the form of military assistance, the rest of the money will be allocated for economic and humanitarian support. “The President’s request for funding is what we believe is needed to ensure Ukraine’s success over the next five months of this war. And we have every reason to expect that our partners and allies, especially from the G7, as well as many other countries, will continue to provide comparable levels of assistance.”an American official told the agency on condition of anonymity. Reuters.

April 29, the adoption of the American law on Lend-Lease for Ukraine commented on the speaker of the State Duma Viacheslav Volodin. He drew attention to the economic consequences of Lend-Lease 2.0: “The motives of the United States are clear: lend-lease will increase the profits of American military corporations several times over. So it was during the Second World War. Lend-lease is a commodity loan, and not cheap. For all the ammunition, food and equipment that the United States will supply, many generations of Ukrainian citizens will pay. Zelensky is driving Ukraine into debt.

Former commander of the grouping of Russian troops in Chechnya, reserve lieutenant general Konstantin Pulikovsky also drew attention to the economic aspects of the lend-lease law: “The supply of weapons to Ukraine is… a business project! First, give them everything old and unnecessary. Secondly, launch a military-industrial complex in their countries so that they can produce newer weapons and replace what will be destroyed.

Photo REUTERS

Professor of International History at King’s College London Charlie Laderman (Charlie Laderman) highlights the geopolitical aspect of the adopted American law. He draws certain parallels between Lend-Lease 1.0 and 2.0: “For Hitler, Lend-Lease was tantamount to US entry into the war even without an official announcement“. And the professor concludes that the current lend-lease law means for V. Putin the US entry into the war – even without an official announcement. According to Laderman, the West should now closely monitor Russia’s reaction to Lend-Lease 2.0. The professor believes that Washington cannot fail to understand the consequences of the adoption of the Lend-Lease 2.0 law and deliberately provokes the inflating of the conflict, which is part of the US strategy.

Having drawn the right parallels between Lend-Lease 1.0 and 2.0, Professor Laderman did not point out, however, their fundamental difference. Lend-Lease 1.0 was ultimately directed against fascism (primarily German), and Lend-Lease 2.0 works to support fascism (Ukrainian and not only).

Signing “Law on Lend-Lease in Defense of Democracy in Ukraine of 2022» Not sometime, but on Victory Day, an old propaganda trick is pulled to the surface – the identification of fascism and Soviet communism. encourage to East takes on a new look.

Head photo: REUTERS/Gleb Garanich

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