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20 Aug, 2023 18:24

Biden rival labels F-16s for Ukraine ‘a disaster for humanity’

Supplying US-made fighter jets to Kiev would only benefit the defense industry, RFK Jr. says
Biden rival labels F-16s for Ukraine ‘a disaster for humanity’

The looming delivery of US-made F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine will not prevent the “collapse” of the country’s military and will only benefit the military-industrial complex, Democrat presidential hopeful Robert F. Kennedy Junior has claimed.

The Ukrainian conflict should be resolved through negotiations, RFK Jr. argued in a thread on social media platform X (formerly Twitter), stating that supplying F-16s to Kiev was a “great decision for the defense industry, but a disaster for Ukraine and humanity.”

“F-16s won’t stop the collapse of the Ukrainian military (which some experts say is imminent). These planes require a lot of training and maintenance. This isn’t the movies,” Kennedy stressed.

The presidential hopeful has long-opposed the enduring Western aid to Ukraine, spearheaded by Washington, arguing that the US should admit its “failure” in the country and focus on domestic issues instead. Kennedy’s criticism of the fighter-jet delivery comes after Washington enabled its European allies to re-export older planes to Ukraine, and hours before the move was officially announced by Denmark and the Netherlands.

The upcoming delivery was heralded by Dutch PM Mark Rutte on Sunday as he hosted Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky at a military airbase in Eindhoven.

“Today we can announce that the Netherlands and Denmark commit to the transfer of F-16 aircraft to Ukraine and the Ukrainian Air Force, including cooperation with the United States and other partners once the conditions for such a transfer have been met,” Rutte said at a press conference.

Simultaneously, the Danish Ministry of Defence released a statement confirming its pledge to provide Kiev with F-16s from its inventory, once certain “conditions” are met. The conditions “include, but are not limited to, successfully selected, tested and trained Ukrainian F-16 personnel as well as necessary authorizations, infrastructure and logistics,” it said.

Kiev has long-demanded modern aircraft, as well as other, increasingly sophisticated weaponry, from its Western backers, arguing the planes would help it turn the tide of the conflict with Russia, which has been going on since February 2022. Moscow has repeatedly urged the collective West to stop the military deliveries, arguing they would only prolong the hostilities rather than change their ultimate outcome.