Greeted as a hero, the Ukrainian president gave a speech that Nancy Pelosi compared to Winston Churchill’s in 1941, shortly after the attack on Pearl Harbor.
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A historical trip that left phrases to remember. Ukrainian President, Volodymyr Zelensky yesterday called for long-term US support in his first international visit since the start of the Russian invasion, saying US aid has not been “charity” and will serve to keep his country “alive and kicking.”
Three hundred days after the Russian leader Vladimir Putin attacked the Ukraine hoping for a quick conquest, Zelensky he was greeted as a hero within the framework of a brilliant visit to Washington, where the president Joe Biden committed about $1.8 billion in military supplies, including for the first time the Patriot missile defense system.
Zelensky, whose media savvy and strong character have contributed favorably to international opinion, was wearing their traditional military clothing. His khaki sweatshirt aroused so much attention that the term “sweatshirt” was a “trending topic” for hours on Twitter in the US and television networks such as CNN spent minutes and minutes analyzing his outfit.
“Every inch of Bakhmut is drenched in blood”
After meeting with Biden, Zelensky gave a speech in Congress, where he handed over a Ukrainian flag that he himself had received from soldiers deployed in Bakhmut, a city to which he referred.
“Last year, 70,000 people lived there in Bakhmut. Now only a few civilians remain. Every inch of that land is soaked in blood,” Zelensky told lawmakers, many of them dressed in the colors of the Ukrainian flag, blue and yellow.
The flag was signed by Ukrainian soldiers and Zelenski handed it over to the leaders of the Congress to thank the military aid sent by their country.
“Money is not charity”
Zelensky expressed gratitude, saying the new year will mark a “turning point” in the fight against Russia.
“Against all odds and all scenarios,” Zelensky said in a standing ovation speech, “Ukraine is still alive and kicking”.
“Your money is not charity. It is an investment in global security and democracy that we will handle in the most responsible way,” Zelenski promised.
The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, who welcomed Zelensky in one of his last acts before the Republicans took control, compared the speech of the Ukrainian president with the one given at Christmas time by the English prime minister Winston Churchill, in 1941, days after the attack on Pearl Harbor.
He also presented Zelensky with a folded US flag that was flying yesterday at the Capitol.
“Ukrainians will celebrate with candles”
Following the simile, Zelensky compared Ukrainian forces to American forces on the fronts of World War II and the War of Independence, saying that the Russians “burn and destroy everything” in a way “similar to the tyranny” of Hitler. . “Ukraine holds its lines and will never surrenderZelensky said to applause.
Ukraine enjoys broad support in the United States, but several radical right-wing Republicans have been critical of calling the aid a gift of taxpayer money.
Zelensky affirmed that Ukrainians will celebrate Christmas this year, despite the atrocities of the war, telling Congress: “Even if there is no electricity, the light of our faith in ourselves will not go out.” “Many will celebrate Christmas with candlelight,” Zelenski said, not because it was “romantic, but because Russia has destroyed the infrastructure.”
“We all want the same thing. Victory, only victory”
Like the “brave American soldiers who held their lines” and fought against Hitler’s Nazi Germany in 1944, Ukrainian soldiers “are doing the same to Putin’s forces this Christmas”Zelensky said to applause.
“If we get attacked by Iranian drones and our people have to go to bomb shelters on Christmas Eve, Ukrainians will continue to sit at the festive table and cheer each other on“, he added.
“All of us, millions of Ukrainians, want the same thing. Victory. Only victory,” Zelensky said.
“Our two nations are allies”
The president also wanted to emphasize that the world is too interconnected to be able to ignore the war in Ukraine and highlighted the union between his country and the United States.
“Our two nations are allies in this battle. And next year will be a turning point, I know, the point at which Ukrainian courage and American determination must ensure the future of our common freedom.
“You will never be alone”
Joe Biden, wearing a blue and yellow tie, put a friendly hand on Zelensky’s shoulder and told him “You will never be alone.”
“The American people stand with you every step of the way and we will be with you for as long as necessary“, he added.
“We are going to continue to strengthen Ukraine’s ability to defend itself, particularly air defense,” Biden told Zelensky as they sat by the fireplace in the Oval Office.
The Patriot anti-missile system, which the United States is sending to Ukraine, “will significantly strengthen” the Ukrainian defense against Russian attacks.”
On September 1, 2021, months before the war, Zelensky had already been received at the White House by Biden, who promised him support in the face of the threat posed by neighboring Russia at the time.
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