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NATO to Putin: ‘There can be no lasting peace if the aggressor wins’

Washington Examiner logo Washington Examiner 11/29/2022 Jamie McIntyre
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STOLTENBERG: ‘WE WILL NOT BACK DOWN’: In remarks ahead of today’s meeting of NATO foreign ministers in Bucharest, Romania, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said that despite the economic hardships the war in Ukraine is imposing on Europe, the West must remain united in supporting Ukraine or risk paying a higher price in the future.

“These are also tough times for us in the rest of Europe and many others around the world, who face a painful cost-of-living crisis," Stoltenberg said in an address to the Aspen-GMF Bucharest Forum this morning. “Indeed, we are all paying a price for Russia’s war against Ukraine, but the price we pay is in money, while the price Ukrainians pay is in blood.”

In a news conference yesterday, Stoltenberg said Russian President Vladimir Putin is trying to “use the winter as a weapon of war against Ukraine,” noting that in the last few weeks, Russia has launched “wave after wave of deliberate missile attacks on cities and civilian infrastructure, striking homes, hospitals, and power grids.”

“If we let Putin win, all of us will pay a much higher price for many years to come,” Stoltenberg argued. “There can be no lasting peace if the aggressor wins. … Therefore, it is in our own long-term security interest to support Ukraine.

“So our message from Bucharest is that NATO will continue to stand with Ukraine for as long as it takes,” he said. “We will not back down.”

ZELENSKY: ‘THEY ARE CAPABLE OF NOTHING BUT DEVASTATION’: In his nightly video address, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky railed against Russia’s indiscriminate shelling of the southern city of Kherson, once a thriving metropolis of 300,000 people but now largely abandoned even after recapture and liberation by Ukrainian forces.

“As every other day, the occupiers again shelled Kherson and the communities of the region. In just one week, the enemy fired 258 times on 30 settlements of our Kherson region,” Zelensky said. “They are capable of nothing but devastation. This is all they leave behind. And what they are doing now against Ukraine is their attempt to take revenge — to take revenge for the fact that Ukrainians have repeatedly defended themselves from them.”

In addition to more air defenses to shoot down Russian missiles, Zelensky is appealing to the West for electrical components and other supplies to reconstruct the country’s devastated power transmission network.

“Ukraine will never be a place for devastation,” Zelensky vowed. “We will do everything to restore every object, every house, every enterprise destroyed by the occupiers.”

KIRBY: ‘YOU JUST CAN'T BRING THE UKRAINIAN PEOPLE TO THEIR KNEES’: At a White House briefing, National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said the hunt is on to find the spare parts and other components to rebuild Ukraine’s electrical grid.

“We're … working inside the various agencies of this administration to get spare parts, equipment, transformers, you know, the kinds of material they'll need to get some of these systems and networks back up and running,” Kirby told reporters.

“Some of the material will, no doubt, come from the United States. But we also recognize that their grid is based on infrastructure that is uniquely European, and so, we're working with, again, allies and partners in the region as well to see what they can do to get more in there to keep the lights on and the water running.”

“It's absolutely despicable what [Putin] is doing in these last few weeks. … These targets are largely civilian, and it's designed for one reason. And that's to try to bring the Ukrainian people to their knees because he can't bring the Ukrainian armed forces to its knees,” Kirby said. “It's hard to believe … Putin would [not] have learned a while ago that you just can't bring the Ukrainian people to their knees.”


Good Tuesday morning and welcome to Jamie McIntyre’s Daily on Defense, written and compiled by Washington Examiner National Security Senior Writer Jamie McIntyre (@jamiejmcintyre) and edited by Stacey Dec. Email here with tips, suggestions, calendar items, and anything else. Sign up or read current and back issues at If signing up doesn’t work, shoot us an email and we’ll add you to our list. And be sure to follow us on Twitter: @dailyondefense.


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HAPPENING TODAY: The Pentagon is scheduled to release its 2022 report to Congress on China’s military strength later today. The annual assessment details China’s progress on its stated goal, as detailed in last year’s report saying it will “basically complete” the modernization of its army by 2035 and transform the People’s Liberation Army into a “world-class” military by 2049.

This year’s report comes after increasing tension over Chinese leader Xi Jinping’s desire to force the unification of Taiwan with the mainland and his explicit threat to use force if necessary. Last year, Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told Congress that Xi wants to have the military capability, though not necessarily the intent, to take over Taiwan by 2027.

“China is not going to be a better military than the United States military is, but they're going to try but they're not going to get there,” Milley said at a Pentagon news conference two weeks ago. “The United States military is No. 1 now, and we are going to be No. 1 five years from now — 2027 is not going to be the date that China becomes No. 1. And we're going to stay No. 1 the entire time. And as long as we remain No. 1, then we will deter the war that people worry about, a great power war between China and the United States.”

Today’s report comes two weeks after President Joe Biden met with Xi in Bali, Indonesia, and one week after Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin met with his Chinese counterpart, Gen. Wei Fenghe, in Siem Reap, Cambodia.

In the meeting on the sidelines of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations defense ministers' meeting, Austin “raised concerns about the increasingly dangerous behavior demonstrated by PLA aircraft in the Indo-Pacific region,” according to a Pentagon readout.


ALSO TODAY: Austin will welcome Colombian Defense Minister Ivan Velasquez Gomez to the Pentagon at 3 p.m.

THE PENTAGON’S ANNUAL LAMENT: It wouldn’t be the holiday season without the Pentagon’s recurring plea for Congress to pass a full defense budget before the end of the year so it can begin to get access to the big increases in military spending lawmakers have promised.

In letters to the top Democratic and Republican leaders in the House and Senate, Austin argued for a “complete, a full-year, whole-of-government funding bill” before the end of the year or the Pentagon will effectively lose “at least $3 billion per month.”

Another temporary, stopgap funding measure known as a “continuing resolution” would, Austin said, “result in significant harm to our people and our programs and would cause harm to our national security and our competitiveness.”

“We must break this pattern of extensive inaction,” Austin wrote. “We can't outcompete China with our hands tied behind our back three, four, five or six months of every fiscal year.”


INDUSTRY WATCH: The State Department approved the sale of 40 AIM-9X Block II tactical missiles and 48 AGM-154s to Finland for an estimated cost of $323.3 million.

The primary contractor is Raytheon Missiles and Defense, according to a release from the Defense Security Cooperation Agency.


The Rundown

Washington Examiner: Lloyd Austin urges Congress to pass new spending bill to avoid ‘significant harm’

Washington Examiner: US keeps up push for Griner and Whelan prisoner swap with Russia

Washington Examiner: US-Russia military hotline used only once since start of war in Ukraine: Report

Washington Examiner: WATCH: BBC journalist beaten and arrested by Chinese police during protests

Washington Examiner: Biden prepares for star-studded first White House state dinner with French president

Washington Examiner: Democratic senators go after Biden plan to end Title 42 at border

Washington Examiner: Nightmare before Christmas: Border Patrol agents reveal fears about collapse of Title 42

Washington Examiner: Opinion: What terms should we impose on a defeated Russia?

Wall Street Journal: China Regime Tightens Grip To Quash COVID-19 Protests

Stars and Stripes: Navy Cruiser Sails Past Disputed Islands In South China Sea, Drawing Chinese Criticism

Popular Mechanics: China’s New Submarine-Launched Missile Can Reach The Western U.S. Block V Virginia-Class: The Submarine the U.S. Navy Desperately Needs

The Drive: Another U.S. Ballistic Missile Submarine’s Movements Peculiarly Publicized

New York Times: Battles Rage in Eastern Ukraine

AP: U.S. Says Russia Abruptly Postpones Arms Control Talks

Reuters: South Korea’s Yoon Warns Of Unprecedented Response To North Korea Nuclear Test, Calls On China To Do More A Sniper In Ukraine Killed a Russian Soldier from 1.7 Miles Away Could Russians Take to the Streets and Fight Back Like in China? Putin the Loser: The Russian Military Keeps Dying in Ukraine TF-X: Turkey Showed The World Its New Stealth Fighter

Financial Times: The Fighter Jet That Could Create A New Alliance Between The UK And Japan

Air & Space Forces Magazine: Air Force Advancing ACE in Italian-Hosted F-35 Exercise

Air & Space Forces Magazine: Air Force Announces Pause of Much-Maligned ‘myEval’ Platform

Stars and Stripes: Ponytails, Braids, Twists Now Covered By Marine Corps Regs For Women

Forbes: Opinion: Why The Next Chairman Of The Joint Chiefs Should Be From The Air Force



9 a.m. — Stimson Center forum: “Tensions on the Korean Peninsula: Is War Possible?” with Jong-kun Choi, former vice minister of foreign affairs, Republic of Korea; Jenny Town, senior fellow, Stimson Center and director, 38 North; Robert Carlin, nonresident fellow, 38 North, and visiting fellow, Stanford University’s Center for International Security and Cooperation; and Joel Wit, distinguished fellow in Asian and Security Studies, Stimson Center

10 a.m. — Heritage Foundation discussion: on "Solving America's Military Recruiting Crisis," with Maj. Gen. Johnny Davis, commanding general of the U.S. Army Recruiting Command, and Beth Asch, senior economist at the Rand Corporation

10:15 a.m. — Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies virtual “Schriever Spacepower Forum,” with Gen. James Dickinson, commander, U.S. Space Command

11 a.m. Bucharest, Romania — Press conference by Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg at the end of Day One of the meeting of NATO foreign ministers

3 p.m. Pentagon River Entrance — Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin welcomes Colombian Defense Minister Ivan Velasquez Gomez to the Pentagon

3 p.m. — Washington Post Live virtual discussion: “The Health of U.S. Military Veterans," with Deputy Defense Secretary Kathleen Hicks; Rosie Torres, co-founder of Burn Pits 360; and Andrew Satin, professor of gynecology and obstetrics at Johns Hopkins Medicine

4 p.m. 16th St. N.W. — Institute of World Politics lecture: "China is Preparing for War, America Is Not,” with Gordon Chang, columnist at Newsweek

7:30 p.m. — Institute for Corean-American Studies virtual fall symposium: "Geopolitical Dynamics in Asia and U.S. National Security," with Matt Pottinger, former deputy national security adviser, visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution, and chairman of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies's China Program


10 a.m. — Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies virtual discussion: "future digital environment as it relates to air and space power," with Air Force Chief Information Officer Lauren Knausenberger


9:30 a.m. — Foundation for Defense of Democracies discussion: “Rogue Proliferators: Nonproliferation Threats Posed by Iran, Syria, Russia, and North Korea,” with keynote remarks by C.S. Eliot Kang, assistant secretary of state for international security and nonproliferation, and panel discussion with Michael Allen, former special assistant to the president and NSC senior director for counterproliferation strategy; Anthony Ruggiero, senior director of FDD’s Nonproliferation and Biodefense Program and former deputy assistant to the president for national security affairs and NSC senior director for counterproliferation and biodefense; Andrea Stricker, FDD research fellow and deputy director of FDD’s Nonproliferation and Biodefense Program; and moderated by Vivian Salama, national security reporter for the Wall Street Journal

10 a.m. — Arab Center virtual discussion: “Iraq at a Crossroads: Challenges and Prospects Facing the New Government," with former Iraqi Ambassador to the United States Rend al Rahim, president and co-founder of the Iraq Foundation; Marsin Alshamary, nonresident fellow at the Brookings Institution's Center for Middle East Policy; Zeidon Alkinani, nonresident fellow at the Arab Center; and Imad Harb, director of research at the Arab Center

11 a.m. — Stimson Center chairman’s forum conversation with retired Chief of Space Operations Gen. John “Jay” Raymond, moderated by retired Air Force Gen. Herbert “Hawk” Carlisle, chairman, Stimson Center Board of Directors


8 p.m. Simi Valley, California — Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Institute annual Reagan National Defense Forum, full agenda at:


10:15 a.m. Simi Valley, California — Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Institute annual Reagan National Defense Forum, full agenda at:


Russian soldiers “are just taking a rifle and walking right down, like in Soviet times. … He gets killed, and the next one comes up the same way.”

A Ukrainian medic quoted by the New York Times, describing the fighting in Bakhmut, where Ukrainians say Russian troops are being cut down by artillery and machine-gun fire


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Tags: National Security, Daily on Defense, NATO, Vladimir Putin, War in Ukraine

Original Author: Jamie McIntyre

Original Location: NATO to Putin: ‘There can be no lasting peace if the aggressor wins’


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