Sen. Kennedy: 'If You Decide to Be a Bear, Be a Grizzly'

( – Sen. John Kennedy, the folksy Louisiana Republican, says he doesn’t want America to be the world’s policeman, “but I don’t want to see Xi Jinping in China or Putin in Russia or the ayatollah in Iran be the world’s policeman, either.”

“We have decided to defend Ukraine,” Kennedy told Fox News’s Neil Cavuto on Wednesday.

“If you decide to be a bear, be a grizzly. We can’t blink, especially when you’re dealing with hard men like these. And I say ‘men’ intentionally. You don’t see too many women in the Politburo or in other decision-making positions in China or in Russia.”

Kennedy said he worries about what Putin just described as “new levels of cooperation” between China and Russia.

That alliance could expand Russia’s war in Ukraine — a war that the United States is fighting by proxy, sending billions of dollars in military and economic aid.


“Well, it’s not going to be easy, and there is risk,” Kennedy said about U.S. support for Ukraine:

“But there’s even greater risk, in my judgment, if we do nothing. I have sponsored a bill — I haven’t been able to pass it in the Senate — that would have the president appoint a special inspector general to follow every penny and to embed people in Ukraine, so we can — we can follow the money.

“But I have never viewed the money we’re providing to Ukraine as an act of charity. I see it as an act of self-preservation.

“It — it’s clear to me that Xi is working with Putin, who’s working with the ayatollah in Iran. Their goal is to have Russia dominate Eastern and Central Europe, to have Iran dominate the Middle East and to have China dominate the Indo-Pacific and sub-Saharan Africa.

“And that is not a place that is safe for the American people.”

Kennedy said he doesn’t want war with China — either “cold” or “hot.”

“But China has got to understand that all we want is for them to become a responsible member of a stable world order. That’s point one,” he said.

“Point two…China respects strength. And if China decides to send military weapons, not just economic support, but military weapons, to Russia, America is going to have to respond.

“Now, I don’t know what President Biden is going to do. But we have got sort of halfway sanctions right now on Russia’s oil industry.”

Kennedy said if China does take Russia’s side in the war, the Biden administration will have to tighten its sanctions on Russia’s oil industry “to try to cripple Russia economically.”

“But that’s also going to mean that the president is going to have to turn to American energy and say, we need you. We need wind, solar, but we also need oil and gas. And he’s going to have to get his boot off the neck of our oil and gas industry.”

(“And to go after Russia and China simultaneously, I guess,” Cavuto said, ending the interview.)


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