May 4, 2022

President Biden Delivers Remarks on the Security Assistance We are Providing to Ukraine 5/03/22 Transcript

President Biden Delivers Remarks on the Security Assistance We are Providing to Ukraine 5/03/22 Transcript
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President Biden Delivers Remarks on the Security Assistance We are Providing to Ukraine 5/03/22. Read the transcript here.


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Linda Griffin: (00:00)
My name is Linda Griffin and I’ve lived in Alabama all my life. I have worked a Lockheed Martin more than 25 years. I have worked on several programs, including Javelin, where I have touched every single one of the 50,000 Javelin missiles that had been built in Troy. 50,000, 50,000. I consider my teammates family, and I can say that the entire Lockheed Martin team is honored by this special guest today. It is a great honor to introduce to you the President of the United States.

President Biden: (01:17)
I tell you what, Linda, if I was CEO of this company I’d be worried.

President Biden: (01:25)
Well, good afternoon everybody and thank you Jim for the invitation to be here today and Linda for the warm welcome today. And Congressman Sewell, woman Sewell, thank you for all you do for the people of the state and the country and for your friendship, our friendship.

President Biden: (01:41)
I wanted to come down to Alabama to make sure that the American people know what workers this… And by the way you have seat, please take it. By the way, sometimes the press is always fair with me, but every once in a while, I make a mistake, like once a speech. But anyway, I years ago, when I started talking for this job, I said, “Please take your seats.” There weren’t any seats everyone was standing, there were no chairs. So I just want to make sure I check whether you had seats.

President Biden: (02:16)
Look, the American people know what worker at this facility you’re doing and support Ukraine’s fight for freedom. And the bottom line is I came to say, “Thank you, thank you, thank you.” That’s the reason I’m here. I’ve been in those battlefields where these missiles are fired. And I spent a lot of time going in and out of Iraq and Afghanistan, maybe a total of 40 times. And I tell you what… And I’ve been in Ukraine a lot prior to the war and on the border since the war. And it’s amazing what you’ve done.

President Biden: (02:58)
We see on the news every single day, the atrocities and the war crimes that are being committed by Russian forces in Ukraine, directed by Vladimir Putin. And it really is gut wrenching. We see the incredible bravery of the Ukrainian fighters defending their country with everything they have. And by the way, it’s not just their warriors. It’s not just their military. It’s people on the street. People on the street staying behind. A lot have gotten out, five million, but a lot are staying including women as well as men staying to fight for their country.

President Biden: (03:34)
And we know that the United States is leading our allies and partners around the world to make sure the courageous Ukrainians who are fighting for the future of their nation, have the weapons and the capacity and ammunition and equipment to defend themselves against Putin’s brutal war. A lot of war crimes being committed. But what we don’t see, we don’t always see, is the work that makes so much of this possible. And that’s you, it’s not hyperbole, it’s you, you make it possible. You make it possible for them to have a shot.

President Biden: (04:08)
You know, during World War II the United States was known as the arsenal democracy. There was Rosie the Riveter, who I actually got to meet quite frankly before she passed away. And a lot of people who in fact kept it going.

President Biden: (04:24)
I was a slight digression. I went over for the 50th anniversary of the end of World War II and I was in Normandy and I went up afterwards to the cemetery and I was walking by myself and it’s incredible. It’s immaculate, it’s perfectly manicured and the headstones are all the same. I looked down one row and I saw three names, same names, father and two sons who had died in the landing, and I was bent down and I was reading the dates of their births. And all of a sudden I heard behind me, “Attention.”

President Biden: (05:12)
And I turned around and there was a gentleman who had to be in his early 80s, in a wheelchair, being wheeled by his son who was a big guy looked like Hoss Cartwright and his wife and one other, a daughter and he saluted me. So I saluted him. And at the time, and I turned, I said, “Thank you for what you did. Thank you for saving, literally saving, civilization.” And he put his hand on his wife, who’s hand was on his shoulder. And he said, “No, no, she did it. She did it.” I looked at her and said, “She built the landing craft that got us in here. She and her friends, they’re the ones that did it.” And he went on and he filled up and all of a sudden the dawned on me, “You’re doing it. You really are doing it. You’re making a gigantic difference for these poor sons of guns who are under such enormous, enormous pressure and firepower.”

President Biden: (06:16)
Those Javelins I saw, there’s 10 for every tank that there is in Ukraine right now. You’re changing people’s lives. We built the weapons… No you really do. But we built the weapons and the equipment that helped defend freedom and sovereignty in Europe, years ago. But that’s true again today.

President Biden: (06:42)
You know some of the best, most effective weapons in our arsenal, those Javelin missiles, like the ones manufactured right here in Pike County, they’re highly portable. They’re extremely effective against a wide range of armored targets. They can hit targets up to 400 meters away and have a fire and forget capability. That means the person firing can… I know, you know it, but it’s for anybody who maybe listening, can change positions or take cover before that Javelin even strikes home, hits the target.

President Biden: (07:12)
In fact, they’ve been so important. There’s even a story about Ukrainian parents naming their children, not a joke, their newborn child Javelin, or Javelina, not a joke. So the brave people in Ukraine, including the many civilians who have taken up arms to defend their country, deserve every ounce of credit for pushing back the Russian assault and frustrating Putin’s desire to dominate Ukraine.

President Biden: (07:41)
We’re at an inflection point in history, for real, it comes along about every six or eight generations where things are changing so rapidly that we have to be in control. Folks, there’s an ongoing battle in the world between autocracy and democracy.

President Biden: (08:01)
Xi Jinping, the leader of China, who I’ve talked with, spent more time with than any other world leader has, over 78 hours either in person or on the telephone with him. And the fact of the matter is he just is straightforward about it. He says, “That democracies cannot be sustained in the 21st century.” Not a joke. “They cannot be sustained because things are moving so rapidly, democracies require consensus, and it’s hard to get consensus therefore they can’t keep up with an autocracy, one man rule.” But that’s not going to be the case, if that happens the whole world changes.

President Biden: (08:39)
I mean, because of you in this first really battle, if you will, for that, to determine whether that’s going to happen is because you’re making it possible. You’re making it possible for the Ukrainian people to defend themselves without us having to risk getting in a third world war by sending an American soldiers fighting Russian soldiers.

President Biden: (09:02)
My dad used to have an expression. He said, “The only war worse than one that’s intended is one that’s unintended.” You’re allowing the Ukrainians to defend themselves. And quite frankly, they’re making fools of the Russian military in many instances. A big part of the reason they’ve been able to keep up fighting and to make this war a strategic failure for Russia is because the United States together with our allies and partners have had their back. The United States alone has committed more than 5,500 Javelins to Ukraine. You’re changing the nation. You really are. Add to that significant supplies from our allies and partners, as well as many thousands of other anti-tank and anti-air weapons, helicopters, armored vehicles, artillery, coastal defense systems.

President Biden: (09:49)
Before Russia attacked, we made sure Russia had Javelins and other weapons, the strength of the defenses of Ukraine was ready for whatever happened. In the last two months, we continue to move even more resources than equipment at a rapid pace in the Ukraine. We’ve made sure that there are no interruptions in the flow of equipment to Ukraine.

President Biden: (10:09)
Since Russia invaded Ukraine just over two months ago, we have sent more than $3 billion in security assistance to Ukraine, alone, us, not to counting our allies. And that money is a direct investment in defending freedom and democracy itself. Because if you don’t stand up to dictators, history has shown us they keep coming. They keep coming. Their appetite for power continues to grow. And every worker in this facility and every American taxpayer is directly contributing to the case for freedom. And that’s something we can all be incredibly proud of, in my view.

President Biden: (10:47)
Last week, I sent Congress… If you excuse the point of personal privilege talking like an old Senator, but I sent a supplemental budget, a fancy way of saying, “We need more money.” To make sure the United States can continue to send weapons directly to the front lines of freedom and Ukraine, and to continue to provide economic and humanitarian assistance to help the Ukrainian people. And I urge the Congress to pass this funding quickly, to help Ukraine continue to succeed against Russian aggression just as they did when they won the battle of Kiev. And to make sure the United States and our allies can replenish our own stocks of weapons to replace what we’ve sent to Ukraine.

President Biden: (11:25)
As I said from the beginning, “This fight is not going to be cheap, but caving to aggression would even be more costly.” We either back the Ukrainian people as they defend their country, or we stand by as Russia continues its atrocities and aggression. I know what the answer is and I think you all do too. I bet I know what the answer to this plan is.

President Biden: (11:48)
There’s something else here to be understood. Being the arsenal of democracy also means good paying jobs for American workers. In Alabama and the states all across America where defense equipment is manufactured and assembled 265 people here at this plant are directly employed working on the Javelin program. All told Lockheed Martin has brought nearly 3,000 jobs to Alabama.

President Biden: (12:15)
The Armed Forces of the United States of America are going to continue to be the best armed, most capable fighting force in the history of the world. In order to do that, we have to make sure our vital defense supplies are getting the inputs and supplies they need to produce and protect and provide the full capacity.

President Biden: (12:32)
I learned on the tour today that each of the Javelins you produce includes more than 200 semiconductors. I’ve been a broken record, as the press will tell you, on our need to be able to produce more semiconductors in the United States. We invented the sucker, going to the moon, we, the United States, we’re the one that modernized it. We’ve done more than anybody else, but guess what? We stopped investing in ourselves. We stopped investing in ourselves.

President Biden: (12:59)
And so now we’re what back in the game, making sure that we become, we become, the primary producer of those semiconductors. Computer chips that power much of our modern lives in our phones, our cars, almost anything that has an on-off switch. And the semiconductor is critical to defense production capacity as you all know better than I do. That’s why we’re making it as hard as we can for Russia to get hold of these semiconductors and advanced technologies that it could use to upgrade its military during this conflict. And why we’re taking steps to make it easier to source what we need here in the United States, during a global semiconductor shortage.

President Biden: (13:40)
And there’s just one more reason why Congress has that quickly to provide the emergency funding of a so-called Chips Act by passing a broader bipartisan Innovation Act so we can produce tens of millions of these chips. There’s something we have to focus on and something I focused on from my early stages of our administration. I’m determined to make sure the United States hold its technological high ground in competition with other nations, especially China, as we move forward.

President Biden: (14:09)
Folks, you know we used to invest as a nation years ago, 35 years ago, we invested 2% of our entire GDP in research and development. We do half of that now. We do half of that. We used to be number one in the world. Now we’re number 13 in the world. My administration we’re changing that. The United States used to own the innovation field. In fact, it was the Department of Research program that established DARPA for the first development of an anti-tank missile with advanced infrared guidance systems that culminate in today’s Javelin.

President Biden: (14:47)
The bipartisan Innovation Act is going to help reverse decades long decline in federal research and development investment. And it should create and support entire families and expand US manufacturing and strengthen our national security. Where in God’s name is written that the United States can no longer be a leading manufacturer in the world?

President Biden: (15:07)
We’ve created just in the last 17 months 465,000 permanent manufacturing jobs in America. We have the best workers, the most competent employees, the best science in the world. And by funding the Chips Act, we’re going to ensure that semiconductors that power of the economy and our national security are made here in America again.

President Biden: (15:31)
Today, all of the world’s most advanced chips are made overseas, but the events of the past few years have proven beyond a doubt that America’s security should never be held hostage to events overseas. Not a pandemic, not a war, not the politics of ambition or other countries. Fundamentally this a national security issue.

President Biden: (15:53)
This is one of the reasons why the Chinese communist party is lobbying folks to oppose this bill and it’s an issue that unites Democrats and Republicans. So let’s get it done. Let’s get it done.

President Biden: (16:08)
In her introduction, Linda said she personally touched every single solitary Javelin, 50,000 that have been manufactured in this plant 20 years ago. I was worried to shake your hand. I thought you might be electrocuted, but that’s where they start right here with American skill, American craftsmanship, American patriotism.

President Biden: (16:36)
And just a few days ago, The Wall Street Journal quoted a young Hungarian fighter saying, and I quote, “Without the Javelins, it would’ve been very hard to stop the enemy pushing ahead.” End of quote. So these weapons touched by the hands, your hands, are in the hands of Ukrainian heroes making a significant difference. That’s something each and every day you could and should be proud of. And I’m once more urging Congress to quickly pass this supplemental funding bill, over $300 billion to help the Ukrainians so they can keep all of you, very, very busy for a while here.

President Biden: (17:15)
So again, let me end where I began. I came for a basic reason, from the bottom of my heart to say, “Thank you. Thank you, thank you, thank you for what you do. Thank you for what you continue to do. Unless you go out in the field and see it, you don’t realize what a difference you’re making.” May God bless you all and may God protect our troops. Thank you so much.

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