White House Warns Of Dangers As Congress Members Take Unauthorized Trips To Ukraine : by Tyler Durden

White House Warns Of Dangers As Congress Members Take Unauthorized Trips To Ukraine

What could go wrong? It’s being widely reported that some Congressional members are taking unauthorized trips to Ukraine following complaints that the White House stopped approving them

The Hill reports Friday that “At least one Democrat and six Republican lawmakers, including Fitzpatrick, have traveled to Ukraine independently between April and July.” This is in reference to Pennsylvania Republican Brian Fitzpatrick, who in May went to Odesa and Kyiv, but without waiting for Biden administration approval. 

Image via US Senate

The White House has meanwhile warned of serious security risks for these “off the books” trips. Concerning Fitzpatrick, The Hill writes, “The former FBI agent, who helped stand up Ukraine’s National Anti-Corruption Bureau in 2015, traveled with Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-Texas), relying on a network of personal contacts and the Ukrainian government to ensure his safety.”

Fitzpatrick told the publication, in reference to Rep. Crenshaw, “Me and Dan just decided to go, because we were told that [trips] were not being approved,” and added: “So that’s why we chose that course. Dan’s a Navy SEAL, I’m an FBI agent, so we can handle ourselves.”

While a limited number of Congressional delegation trips have been meet with formal executive branch approval, many have not, also amid a backlog of US lawmakers who are looking to go. For example, Lindsey Graham is one high profile senator who went on an independent trip to the Ukrainian capital in July.

Of course, Biden himself has yet to go even after the UK’s Boris Johnson went twice – which involved a train ride for one leg of it – though some say it was to distract from political scandals at home. 

Crucially, the more that unapproved trips occur to Ukraine by US officials, the greater the chances of a major international incident and escalation with Russia. There’s concern that these trips might involve possibly cutting corners on what’s considered necessary layers of security by the Secret Service, local Ukraine forces, and US military personnel.

On this note, The Hill underscores, “The administration began withholding approval over fears that security provided by the U.S. military risked a direct confrontation with Russia if American service members were wounded or killed. “

As for the potential for a lax security situation with the unapproved trips, Sen. Graham earlier admitted that his trip never received State Dept. approval given it didn’t feel it had “the footprint on the ground to take care of us.” 

Tyler Durden
Fri, 08/12/2022 – 20:10

​ White House Warns Of Dangers As Congress Members Take Unauthorized Trips To Ukraine

What could go wrong? It’s being widely reported that some Congressional members are taking unauthorized trips to Ukraine following complaints that the White House stopped approving them. 

The Hill reports Friday that “At least one Democrat and six Republican lawmakers, including Fitzpatrick, have traveled to Ukraine independently between April and July.” This is in reference to Pennsylvania Republican Brian Fitzpatrick, who in May went to Odesa and Kyiv, but without waiting for Biden administration approval. 
Image via US Senate

The White House has meanwhile warned of serious security risks for these “off the books” trips. Concerning Fitzpatrick, The Hill writes, “The former FBI agent, who helped stand up Ukraine’s National Anti-Corruption Bureau in 2015, traveled with Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-Texas), relying on a network of personal contacts and the Ukrainian government to ensure his safety.”

Fitzpatrick told the publication, in reference to Rep. Crenshaw, “Me and Dan just decided to go, because we were told that [trips] were not being approved,” and added: “So that’s why we chose that course. Dan’s a Navy SEAL, I’m an FBI agent, so we can handle ourselves.”

While a limited number of Congressional delegation trips have been meet with formal executive branch approval, many have not, also amid a backlog of US lawmakers who are looking to go. For example, Lindsey Graham is one high profile senator who went on an independent trip to the Ukrainian capital in July.

Of course, Biden himself has yet to go even after the UK’s Boris Johnson went twice – which involved a train ride for one leg of it – though some say it was to distract from political scandals at home. 

Crucially, the more that unapproved trips occur to Ukraine by US officials, the greater the chances of a major international incident and escalation with Russia. There’s concern that these trips might involve possibly cutting corners on what’s considered necessary layers of security by the Secret Service, local Ukraine forces, and US military personnel.

On this note, The Hill underscores, “The administration began withholding approval over fears that security provided by the U.S. military risked a direct confrontation with Russia if American service members were wounded or killed. ”

As for the potential for a lax security situation with the unapproved trips, Sen. Graham earlier admitted that his trip never received State Dept. approval given it didn’t feel it had “the footprint on the ground to take care of us.” 

Tyler Durden
Fri, 08/12/2022 – 20:10 

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