March 31, 2022

VIDEO: ICYMI: Auchincloss: “Now Is The Time To Hit And Hit Hard”


VIDEO: ICYMI: Auchincloss: “Now Is The Time To Hit And Hit Hard”

Washington, D.C. - This morning, Congressman Jake Auchincloss (D, MA-04), a Major in the Marine Reserves and former cybersecurity manager, joined MSNBC’s “Way Too Early” to discuss the latest in Ukraine following yesterday’s classified congressional briefing. 



On the Latest in Ukraine: 

Now is the time to hit and to hit hard. Yachts for Ukraine is a clear and simple message to Russian oligarchs that regardless of where you are trying to hide your ill-gotten wealth, we are going to freeze and seize it and we are going to use it to help humanitarian aid in Ukraine. It’s  part of a larger packet of proposals I put together in a 10 point plan more than a month ago, discussed it on this show with you, and in a classified briefing I attended yesterday with the administration, it’s clear that these measures, amongst others, are working. The Russians are beginning to redeploy forces from around Kyiv, the capital, towards the east, Donbas, where they have more strength, and that moment of transition is always the most vulnerable time for ground forces. They are in contact with their enemy but they’ve got to redeploy logistics and command and control nodes which are the most vulnerable elements of battalion-sized groups. We’ve got to step up paramilitary and intelligence support. We have got to step up our material aid to Ukraine, lethal and nonlethal, including s-300s, and we’ve got to wage electronic war against Russian units. I’ve been a Marine officer, I’ve been a cybersecurity manager, I have seen how degrading it can be to ground forces when you undermine their ability to shoot, move, and communicate by jamming their radios, impairing their computer systems, and just generally demobilizing them…The facts on the ground always drive 90% of the reality of diplomacy. And so we need to do the utmost to change the facts on the ground as they negotiate in Turkey to give Ukraine as much leverage as possible. That means - as we discussed - electronic warfare and other paramilitary intelligence support to complement the s-300s and the air defense and the material we are sending to Ukrainian forces. It also critically means we need to step up credible comprehensive threats of sanctions against China should they provide an economic or military lifeline to the Kremlin. Cutting off that lifeline - or any hope of that lifeline - will severely undermine Putin’s position. 

On Yachts for Ukraine: 

It’s empowering the president and his administration who are already working with our allies overseas to identify areas where Russian oligarchs are trying to store their wealth in very illiquid forms, like yachts, and empowering them to freeze and seize those yachts and then further empowering them to transfer those gains towards direct humanitarian aid to Ukraine. And the message is really meant to buttress the wider administration message to the oligarchs - there is no place to hide. 


The latest where I am is we have not seen hospitalizations or cases rise materially. In 2022 we control COVID, COVID does not control us. We have the ways to track - through wastewater and other leading indicators - case counts. We have the tools to prepare should we see a variant that is going to lead to another surge in cases. We are not going to allow COVID in ‘22 to disrupt normal life, we have the tools to control this.