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Biden OKs Ukraine to use U.S.-supplied arms to strike inside Russia near Kharkiv area

42 Comments
By Steve Holland, Humeyra Pamuk and Phil Stewart

President Joe Biden quietly has authorized Kyiv to launch U.S.-supplied weapons at military targets inside Russia that are supporting an offensive against the northeastern Ukrainian city of Kharkiv, four U.S. officials said on Thursday.

The decision marks a policy shift by Biden, who had steadfastly refused to allow Ukraine to use American weaponry for strikes inside Russia.

Russia's embassy in Washington and Russia's mission to the United Nations in New York did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The U.S. officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Biden's decision applies only to targets inside Russia near the border with the Kharkiv region, where an offensive launched by Moscow on May 10 has overrun some villages.

"The President recently directed his team to ensure that Ukraine is able to use U.S.-supplied weapons for counter-fire purposes in the Kharkiv region so Ukraine can hit back against Russian forces that are attacking them or preparing to attack them," said one U.S. official.

Russia is building up forces near the northern part of the region, but it lacks the troop numbers to stage a major push, Ukraine's top commander said on Thursday.

Kharkiv, Ukraine's second largest city, is 19 miles from the border with Russia.

It is the second time this year that Biden has quietly relaxed his policy on weapons supplies for Ukraine, bending to calls to send long-range missiles known as ATACMS to Kyiv.

"The Biden administration has come a long way from their hypersensitivity to and misunderstanding of the risk of escalation," said Alexander Vindman, a retired Army lieutenant colonel and former director for European affairs at the White House National Security Council under the Trump administration.

He applauded the shift in Biden's policy, which he said "unties Ukraine's hands."

"Of course it's the right move," Vindman said.

The U.S. is the biggest supplier of weapons to Ukraine in its battle against the full-scale invasion launched by Russian President Vladimir Putin in February 2022.

The officials said that U.S. policy would continue to prohibit the Ukrainian military from using ATACMS, which have a range of up to 186 miles (300 km), and other long-range U.S.-supplied weapons for deep strikes inside Russia.

Biden's decision also does not mean the U.S. now approves of drone attacks that Ukraine has been launching against Russian petroleum facilities, they said.

Some NATO allies and U.S. lawmakers have been calling on Biden to relax the restriction on U.S. weapons to allow Ukraine to strike missile launchers and other military sites inside Russia that are backing Moscow's drive toward Kharkiv.

Russia jetfighters flying inside Russia out of reach of Ukrainian air defenses have been supporting the offensive by loosing highly precise glide bombs at Ukrainian defense lines and into Kharkiv, where they have caused numerous civilian casualties.

Putin on Tuesday warned NATO members against allowing Ukraine to fire their weapons into Russia and he raised anew a risk of nuclear war.

Some experts dismissed his remarks as bluster. They noted that Putin has failed to act on similar threats in the past and already has committed the bulk of his conventional forces to Europe's biggest land war since World War Two.

"I don't think we can or should be bullied by Vladimir Putin," said U.S. Representative Gerry Connolly, a Democratic member of the House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee. "Is he really willing to risk nuclear war and a conflict with NATO?"

Connolly co-signed a May 20 letter with Representative Michael Turner, the Republican chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, and other lawmakers urging the Biden administration to allow Ukraine to use U.S. weapons to hit strategic targets inside Russia.

For some time, critics have urged NATO allies to relax restrictions on use of their weapons against military targets inside Russia. Those voices have grown within the alliance since Russia launched the Kharkiv offensive.

Countries that have called for relaxing restrictions or done so for their own arms sent to Ukraine include Britain, the Netherlands, Sweden, the Baltic states, Finland, Denmark, Germany and France.

Biden faced the potentially embarrassing prospect that as he hosts a NATO summit in July, Russian forces would be advancing on Kharkiv and in Ukraine's east as the alliance marks its 75th anniversary, analysts said.

© Thomson Reuters 2024.

©2024 GPlusMedia Inc.

42 Comments

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" . . . to strike inside Russia near Kharkiv region"

It sounds like a bit of a slippery slope, doesn't it? What's near to one person might seem far away to another person.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

Good move. Russia's barbarism must be returned upon it.

3 ( +11 / -8 )

It not gonna make any difference, Russian are slowly tightening the noose,it will.mean more unwarranted escalation

-3 ( +8 / -11 )

President Joe Biden has quietly allowed Kyiv to fire U.S.-supplied weapons at targets inside Russia

So quietly it's reported and announced on world news?

Russia doesn't want to fight NATO so this should be an interesting turn of events.

Then again Russia could obliterate Ukraine and that would stop the war.

-4 ( +6 / -10 )

Russia will probably just carpet bomb the heck out of Ukraine unfortunately

-9 ( +3 / -12 )

Mr GoodmanToday  07:01 am JST

Russia will probably just carpet bomb the heck out of Ukraine unfortunately

They've been trying that but unfortunately Ukraine has a lot of apartment buildings and even Putin doesn't want to lose their aircraft he has, poor as they are.

Then again Russia could obliterate Ukraine and that would stop the war.

I suspect eventually Russian mothers will get tired of sending their sons on a war of obliteration. And if you are thinking nukes is the answer, the US can easily open up a path to Crimea for Ukraine.

2 ( +9 / -7 )

"The President recently directed his team to ensure that Ukraine is able to use U.S.-supplied weapons for counter-fire purposes in the Kharkiv region so Ukraine can hit back against Russian forces that are attacking them or preparing to attack them," said one U.S. official.

Very good news.

1 ( +8 / -7 )

Mr Goodman

Russia will probably just carpet bomb the heck out of Ukraine unfortunately

You think you haven't been doing that? Do you know how big glide bombs are?

5 ( +9 / -4 )

Mr Goodman

President Joe Biden has quietly allowed Kyiv to fire U.S.-supplied weapons at targets inside Russia

So quietly it's reported and announced on world news?

Russia doesn't want to fight NATO so this should be an interesting turn of events.

How so? Nothing materially changes, and Russia will not be fighting NATO.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

Putin lovers are going to be angry about this!

Russia will probably just carpet bomb the heck out of Ukraine unfortunately

Wait, Putin has been letting tens of thousands of Russian soldiers die in Ukraine when he could have been doing this all along?

Seems pretty incompetent, no?

4 ( +10 / -6 )

Yrral

It not gonna make any difference, Russian are slowly tightening the noose,

Well they are slowing being pushed out of the Kharkhiv region. This will only help with that.

it will.mean more unwarranted escalation

Doubt it.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

So that's great. This means everything will end much faster for Ukrainians. So the conflict has already dragged on for some time. Apparently not everyone has gotten rich from this yet.

-7 ( +4 / -11 )

nik

So that's great. This means everything will end much faster for Ukrainians.

Not sure how you arrive at that opinion.

Apparently not everyone has gotten rich from this yet.

I'm pretty sure that wasn't Putin's aims when he launched his imperialistic invasion on Ukraine.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

Why doesn't the U.S.A. just openly declare war on Russia?

That's what they are doing by proxy.

What would happen if China gave Mexico bombs to lob at the U.S.A?

Or better still Cuba?

-3 ( +7 / -10 )

BertieWooster

Why doesn't the U.S.A. just openly declare war on Russia?

Because they have no wish to invade Russia?

That's what they are doing by proxy.

No they aren't.

What would happen if China gave Mexico bombs to lob at the U.S.A?

Well they giving the Russian military parts to fuel Putin's invasion.

And if the US invaded Mexico, China can go ahead.

Or better still Cuba?

Same.

1 ( +8 / -7 )

Ukraine prevails!

Its is still a Putins war!

/sorry I may still have some hangover from yesterday.../

-6 ( +4 / -10 )

Should have happened a long time ago. It's total lunacy to allow Russia to attack Ukraine, then return across the border for a time-out whenever it wants to regroup.

   YrralToday 06:55 am JST

   it will.mean more unwarranted escalation

A typical Kremlin propaganda line.

Russia has already "escalated" the situation to illegal invasion, murder, rape, torture, and child abduction. It can't be "escalated" much more than that.

   BertieWoosterToday 08:50 am JST

   Why doesn't the U.S.A. just openly declare war on Russia?

   That's what they are doing by proxy.

There's that word again: "proxy." It's a real comfort blanket to the pro-Kremlin mob.

The US didn't start this war (sorry, "special military operation") - Putin did. Russia and its online minions crying "proxy war" because it's being smacked back in the face for something that it itself started is laughable.

3 ( +8 / -5 )

Why doesn't the U.S.A. just openly declare war on Russia?....Because they have no wish to invade Russia?

Nope, because it is easier and less costly for the neocons to use Ukrainians to try and achiever their long term of strategically weakening Russia. Some of their mouthpieces here keep emphasizing that US interests are well served as long as UAF are the ones taking casualties and US just supplies the weapons. Apparently its also great for the US arms manufacturers as it brings more profit$$ and jobs.

That's what they are doing by proxy.

No they aren't.

Lol, sure..and the sky outside is pink today.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

Good move. Russia's barbarism must be returned upon it.

And still losing, how much more do we have to fund a losing lost cause?

-7 ( +2 / -9 )

question

does Biden wants to ignite WW3 anytime soon?

it seems so to me...?

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

Ukraine prevails! Its is still a Putins war! /sorry I may still have some hangover from yesterday.../

You forgot to add - Putin is a land grabbing dictator, the invasion was totally unprovoked, NATO didn't expand eastwards, 2014 Donbas didn't happen and the West is not a participant in the conflict. There , you are welcome :/

-7 ( +2 / -9 )

isabelle

this conflict have started in 2014 right after Maidan coup.

update your info.sooner-better.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

That's what they are doing by proxy.

There's that word again: "proxy."

Yeah, because it happens to be a fact bruh.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

Ramsey's KitchenToday 09:41 am JST

Ukraine prevails! Its is still a Putins war! /sorry I may still have some hangover from yesterday.../

You forgot to add - Putin is a land grabbing dictator, the invasion was totally unprovoked, NATO didn't expand eastwards, 2014 Donbas didn't happen and the West is not a participant in the conflict. There , you are welcome :/

Sumimasen wasureta.

UA forces are winning at all fronts,spring/summer/autumn/winter offensives are going great as UA forces are marching towards Moscows RedSquare.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

someone need to google for meaning of

i r o n y

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

Ramsey's Kitchen

Why doesn't the U.S.A. just openly declare war on Russia?....Because they have no wish to invade Russia?

Nope, because it is easier and less costly for the neocons to use Ukrainians to try and achiever their long term of strategically weakening Russia.

So why did Russia allow the US to weaken them by invading Ukraine? This US plan to weaken Russia would have fallen flat without that invasion. How stupid is Putin to fall into this trap?

That's what they are doing by proxy.

No they aren't.

Lol, sure..and the sky outside is pink today.

Great. Glad you are enjoying a nice sunset.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

UAfan

isabelle

this conflict have started in 2014 right after Maidan coup.

There was no Maidan coup.

And if you don't agree, please post a link that describes this mythical Maidan coup.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

This is not even a new policy if you believed, as the Kremlin and it's supporters do, that the illegally annexed Ukrainian oblasts were officially part of Russia.

Two pieces of good news in one morning!

5 ( +8 / -3 )

There was Maidan coup.

Look for info by yourself.

No extra word to say.

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

one question for happiest people from these good news.

do you know difference if you

a/directly attack small country like Grenada and win in 48hrs

b/proxy attack nuclear armed country like Russia

-8 ( +2 / -10 )

UAfan

There was Maidan coup.

Look for info by yourself.

Oh, I know the history well, I was around and paying attention when it was unfolding.

But my challenge to you is to post any link of evidence that there was a 2014 Maidan coup.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

If Russia is using weapons from Iran, China, and North Korea to attack inside Ukraine, why can't Ukraine do the same?

6 ( +8 / -2 )

There was Maidan coup. Look for info by yourself.

 I was around and paying attention when it was unfolding.

Paying attention to the narrative brought by western intelligence / mass media to their target audience does not present unbiased facts. An elected government was brought down by sudden violent street protests - Oxford definition of a coup.

-7 ( +2 / -9 )

UAfanToday 10:16 am JST

There was Maidan coup.

Irrelevant regarding Russia on all counts.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

bass4funkToday 09:37 am JST

Good move. Russia's barbarism must be returned upon it.

And still losing, how much more do we have to fund a losing lost cause?

It's national security. A patriot realizes we fight or pay to fight the threat until it is gone.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

Ramsey's KitchenToday 11:10 am JST

There was Maidan coup. Look for info by yourself.

 I was around and paying attention when it was unfolding.

Paying attention to the narrative brought by western intelligence / mass media to their target audience does not present unbiased facts. An elected government was brought down by sudden violent street protests - Oxford definition of a coup.

Your failed president rules over an apartment in Moscow. Definition of a leader without any sort of mandate.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

It's national security.

How? Russia is not threatening the US. Ukraine is Russia,s backyard not America,s.

A patriot realizes we fight or pay to fight the threat until it is gone.

Yet you keep saying US is not directly involved in the conflict. This one is all over the place as usual.

-8 ( +2 / -10 )

UAfanToday 09:41 am JST

update your info.sooner-better.

I get my info from the real world, not Putin's fantasy world.

Perhaps you should try it some time.

Ramsey's KitchenToday 09:42 am JST

Yeah, because it happens to be a fact bruh.

Only in Putin's fantasy world.

Ramsey's KitchenToday 11:22 am JST

Ukraine is Russia,s backyard not America,s.

It's wholly irrelevant "where" Ukraine is: the fact is that it is a sovereign country that has been illegally invaded by Russia.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

"There was Maidan coup.

Irrelevant regarding Russia on all counts."

Irrelevant only to neocon fans ( and their hypocrisy / double standards ) who loudly proclaim they defend democracy yet support coups against a democratically elected governments as it suits them.

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

update your info.sooner-better........I get my info from the real world, not Putin's fantasy world.

This one calls western mass media feeding western intelligence narratives to their target audience -real world. In that case we can see why you were duped.

Yeah, because it happens to be a fact ...........Only in Putin's fantasy world.

Nah, in the real world bruh.

It's wholly irrelevant "where" Ukraine is: the fact is that it is a sovereign country that has been illegally invaded by Russia.

Gotta love when the US that has invaded more countries around the world than anyone else gets on a soap box to preach. One rule for them, another one for everyone else.

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

Ramsey's KitchenToday  11:37 am JST

Gotta love when the US that has invaded more countries around the world than anyone else gets on a soap box to preach. One rule for them, another one for everyone else.

The fact the US last stole land in 1898 and Russia last stole land in 2022 is inescapable.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

BertieWoosterToday  08:50 am JST

Why doesn't the U.S.A. just openly declare war on Russia?

Because it must be Russia to take the final act of belligerency.

That's what they are doing by proxy.

100k Russians didn't die from a proxy.

What would happen if China gave Mexico bombs to lob at the U.S.A?

1) We would have serious questions about what happened to our 2nd largest trading partner.

Or better still Cuba?

Cuba can host missiles, just not nuclear. You obviously don't know the outcome of the Cuban Missile Crisis where the US was forced to accept Cuba's independence as Russia will be forced to accept Ukraine's.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

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