U.S. Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Saks) is asking President Joe Biden how he plans to respond if Russia were to use a nuclear weapon against Ukraine.
On Friday, Rogers, the ranking Republican of the House Armed Services Committee, joined U.S. Reps. Michael McCaul (R-Texas), the ranking Republican of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, and Mike Turner (R-Ohio), the ranking Republican on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, in a letter to Biden asking him to “clarify” the U.S. response if Russia were to use the weapon of mass destruction against Ukraine.
“In our view, every tool of national power should be leveraged to achieve deterrence of Russian nuclear aggression,” the letter says. “To this end, we urge you to clarify U.S. policy concerning the use of tactical nuclear weapons by Russia in Europe and to clearly communicate such policy to the Russian government. We must reinforce our extended deterrence commitments regarding our nuclear umbrella upon which our European allies have relied for decades.”
The congressmen view Biden’s past statements on the threat as having not been strong enough.
“On May 31st,” the letter continues, “you wrote a guest opinion essay in the New York Times in which you stated, ‘Let me be clear: Any use of nuclear weapons in this conflict on any scale would be completely unacceptable to us as well as the rest of the world and would entail severe consequences.’ This statement is insufficient to deter Russia.”
They add that a strong statement on the issue now could act as a deterrent to any potential Russian use of nuclear weapons.
“The U.S. cannot be a passive spectator as Russia uses nuclear intimidation,” the congressmen argue in the letter. “If Russia uses nuclear weapons in Ukraine, the U.S. must act. This must be clear to Russia to deter their use of nuclear weapons in this unprovoked war of aggression against Ukraine.”
Yaffee is a contributing writer to Yellowhammer News and hosts “The Yaffee Program” Weekdays 9-11am on WVNN. You can follow him on Twitter @Yaffee
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