"I Believe the US Has Not Done Enough to Back Ukraine." Interview with Mike Pompeo

Tuesday, 4 April 2023 — , European Pravda

Mike Pompeo is an American Republican politician who, under Donald Trump, was among those who made the most crucial decisions in the United States. In the first year of Trump's administration, Pompeo headed the CIA. For the next three years, he headed the State Department, the US diplomatic service.

Pompeo remained in the history of Ukrainian-American relations thanks to the "Crimea Declaration" (Ukr) or "Pompeo Declaration," which establishes a written obligation of the US to strictly adhere to the policy of non-recognition of the illegal annexation of Crimea. It was also during his tenure that the State Department first approved the sale of Javelin to Ukraine for the free use of the Armed Forces. After the full-scale invasion in 2022, he also took a tough stance, calling the actions of the Russian Federation genocide (Ukr).

All this becomes especially important since, according to the American media, Mike Pompeo might participate in the presidential race in 2024. If another Republican candidate wins, he may return to the executive branch.

This week, the former state secretary visited Kyiv at the invitation of YES and the Victor Pinchuk Foundation. He met with several Ukrainian officials.

"European Pravda" had a few minutes to talk with the politician. We started with the question that not all of Mike Pompeo's fellow party members are like him (it is enough to mention his recent boss, Donald Trump). The former Secretary of State did not like all the questions. He openly avoided answering some of them, which says a lot.

We leave the conclusions on this matter to our readers.

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First of all, let me thank you for your outspoken support of Ukraine during the war. But don't you see that some American politicians are not sure about backing Ukraine?

- Yes, of course. It's America. There are lots of different opinions on everything, including how to conduct foreign policy, including on fiscal matters.

The world can say that the United States has led, and I'm confident the United States will still continue to lead in our efforts to push back against Vladimir Putin.

We know it's important. There'll be loud voices all over the place, but the vast majority of Americans understand it's in America's best interest that Europe will not be invaded by tyrants like Vladimir Putin.

- We sometimes hear from Republicans that the war with Russia is a European matter, and the US should stay out of it.

- Well, it is a European affair. That's a true statement. Europe should do more than they're doing as well. I completely agree with that. Most every American would agree with that. It is Europe's challenge in the first instance, but that doesn't mean that there's not deep American interest there and we shouldn't continue to provide support.

In fact, I've been critical that we've not done enough fast enough. We've not provided this support in a way that actually could have made this already end. That's absolutely tragic. You will have voices that will disagree with that in both political parties in the United States of America. I'm convinced that for America, this matters a lot.

Під час інтерв'ю. Фото Сергія Ільїна, YES/фонд Пінчука
At the interview. Credit Serhii Illin, YES/ Pinchuk Foundation

Xinping is watching this. The Chinese know that if America doesn't stand when a tyrant invades the nation, they can move about the cabin too freely. I'm convinced America will stay in this.

I hope that the whole world will join us, not just European nations, but I hope other countries as well.

- What should Ukraine do to convince those who are not yet convinced of the need to support us during this war?

- Just do what you've been doing. It is amazing to watch. Not just the Ukrainian leadership, but the Ukrainian people stand for their country, their own nations, sovereignty. We get this in the United States. We get American sovereignty. We want every nation to be sovereign — the rule of law matters.

If Vladimir Putin were to be successful here at taking Ukraine, this would be a devastating blow to the common idea that we've had for 75 years about nations and sovereignty.

- I can't help bringing up the names... After all, Donald Trump...

- (interrupting) You can go through lots of names. There are 330 million Americans.

Every piece of legislation passed today has been very clear: We want accountability. We want to make sure that the money gets to the right place. We want to make sure that every nation is participating in the way we want. We want to make sure that the resources get deployed correctly. I'm confident we'll continue to do that (backing Ukraine - ed.).

- Do you think the voters will support backing Ukraine in the way you are talking about?

- Focus on the things that you can impact here in Ukraine. Do the things that make a difference to your nation and your people.

Begin to get the reforms in place that are needed so American businesses will come.

That's why I'm here on this trip. 

I think the American people, Republican voters, want that model that says America is going to be strong. We're going to convince bad actors like Vladimir through American strength, American power with our European friends.

We will deter not only Vladimir Putin, but others around the world who are beginning to feel like they can walk all over the United States of America. We are not going to let that happen. I'm convinced that's what Republican voters want - the model of peace through strength.

- It is important for Ukraine not to lose this window of opportunity even if the Republicans win again...

- Stop worrying about American elections a year and a half away. Focus on the things that can be impacted here. 

- To achieve military success, we need weapons, including long-range weapons. Do you see the prospects of providing it, or is it realistic to convince the US authorities of this?

- I wish the administration had provided more weapons faster. I've said this repeatedly. They have been slow.

They have been overly concerned about provoking Vladimir Putin. Therefore they have been late.

I think that they provided these weapon systems, longer-range capabilities, better intelligence, all the tools that the Ukrainian military needs. Had they done that a quicker, better, faster, it might be the case that we wouldn't be where we are.

- How do you see post-war Russia? It is definitely not going to be democratic.

- It depends on how the war is prosecuted. In the end, what matters is how we get a security architecture that protects Europe from this ever happening again.

When we get this right, the Russian people will get it right in that country.


By Sergiy Sydorenko

Editor, "European Pravda"

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