Biden says NATO will help Ukraine beat Russia

What happened

President Joe Biden kicked off NATO’s 75th anniversary summit on Tuesday with a speech lauding the Atlantic alliance and pledging new military aid to help Ukraine fend off Russia’s invasion. He also surprised outgoing NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg by awarding him the Presidential Medal of Freedom, America’s highest civilian honor.

Biden said the U.S. and several other NATO allies will be providing Ukraine with four more Patriot missile arrays and dozens of other air defense systems to protect cities from Russian bombardments like Monday’s missile barrage that destroyed Kyiv’s children’s hospital. Vladimir Putin wants to “wipe Ukraine off the map,” Biden said. “And we know Putin won’t stop in Ukraine. But make no mistake, Ukraine can and will stop Putin.”

Biden’s “forceful speech” sought to “bolster confidence in both the alliance and his own political standing” after his “disastrous debate performance 12 days earlier,” The New York Times said. “By all measures, he passed the test,” speaking in a “strong voice, with few errors,” though he used a teleprompter. Still, Reuters said, “some diplomats at the summit said the damage” from Biden’s debate performance “was hard to erase.”

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