The United States has rejected Poland’s offer to give the country Russian-made fighter jets to help Ukraine, per Reuters.
Details: Poland offered to transfer Russian-made MiG-29 fighter jets to a U.S. base in Germany, which would help replenish Ukraine’s air force against Russia, according to Reuters.
Yes, but: The U.S. was not told about the plan before Poland announced it, Under Secretary of State Victoria Nuland told senators Tuesday, according to NBC News.
The reason: The U.S. rejected the plan because Poland sending planes to a U.S. base in Germany and then to Ukraine could be seen as a NATO threat against Russia, according to CNN.
- NATO has been determined not to involve itself in the war unless it was attacked directly by Russia, per CNN.
- Per MSNBC, the U.S. originally thought Poland would deliver the MiG-29 jets to Kyiv directly and not to Germany.
- Per CNN, there was a belief that Ukrainian pilots would pick up the planes directly.
What they’re saying: “We do not believe Poland’s proposal is a tenable one,” Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said in a statement, per NBC News.
Why it matters: Vice President Kamala Harris is heading to Europe Wednesday for a meeting with Poland and Romania, which has now become more complicated because of the U.S. rejection of Poland’s proposal, CNN reports.
- “Harris will be tasked with smoothing over the situation as she arrives in Warsaw late Wednesday on a mission to reassure one of NATO’s easternmost allies the United States remains committed to its security amid fresh worries about Russia’s intentions,” according to CNN.