WASHINGTON — His country's future at stake, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy used inspirational words, optimistic resolve and a nod to Christmas in appealing Tuesday to leaders in Congress for U.S. aid for his fighters in the war with Russia.
But after hours of talks on Capitol Hill, additional American support appeared in grave doubt as Zelenskyy arrived at the White House to huddle with President Joe Biden. The U.S. has already provided Ukraine $111 billion since Russian President Vladimir Putin launched his grinding invasion more than 21 months ago, but Republicans are insisting on linking any more money to strict U.S.-Mexico border security changes that Democrats decry.
The White House is warning that if new money isn't provided by year's end it will have swift consequences for Ukraine's capacity to hold its territory, let alone take back land captured by Russia.
Meeting with Zelenskyy in the Oval Office, Biden said, “Mr. President, I call on Congress to do the right thing, to stand with Ukraine, and to stand up for freedom.” He added, “Congress needs to pass the supplemental funding for Ukraine before they break for the holiday recess. before they give Putin the greatest Christmas gift they could possibly give him.”
Zelenskyy made his own case during his brief White House appearance with Biden and his private meetings with congressional leaders — that Ukrainian forces have fought…