- The Washington Times - Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Sen. Robert Menendez on Tuesday called on the U.S. to supply weapons to the Ukraine government so it can repel columns of Russia-backed forces in the eastern part of its country.

NATO leaders are meeting this week and will discuss whether they should assemble to a special force that can quickly deploy and to Ukraine, when needed.
Meanwhile, Mr. Menendez said Ukraine needs weaponry.

“They’re not in a position with the equipment that they have to go ahead and fight back,” the New Jersey Democrat told NPR’s Morning Edition. “So while we have provided night-vision goggles, that’s great. But seeing your enemy and being able to fight them are two different things.”

“If a tank is coming at you and you’re firing with a peashooter, you’re not going to be able to stop that tank,” he added.

Mr. Menendez, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, spoke to NPR on his way back from Kiev.

He said no one should be disillusioned into thinking that rebels in Ukraine’s eastern sector have no link to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

“This is no longer the premise that, ‘Oh, separatists are fighting,’” he said. “This is a continuation of the violation of international order that Russia has created.”