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The Patriot Anti-Ballistic Missile System is being considered for delivery to Ukraine by the Netherlands

The Dutch prime minister, Mark Rutte, said on Tuesday that his nation was contemplating providing a Patriot missile system to Ukraine, a move that would reinforce Kyiv’s air defences and help withstand Russian attacks.

Mr. Rutte, seated next to President Biden in the Oval Office, stated that a Russian attack on the Ukrainian city of Dnipro, which resulted in the deaths of dozens of civilians in a single residential building, had strengthened “our resolve to stay with Ukraine” in the face of mounting concerns about the Ukrainians’ ability to withstand a second possible offensive by Moscow.

Mr. Rutte informed Mr. Biden, “We want to join what you are doing with Germany on the Patriot project, so the air defence system.” “I believe it is crucial that we join that, and I discussed it with Olaf Scholz of Germany this morning.”

Uncertain whether the Dutch had officially committed to delivering the system. The Defense Department and the White House would to comment on whether a definitive commitment had been made, but an administration official indicated that a formal decision was anticipated. The Dutch Foreign Ministry declined to comment in response to a request.

Mr. Rutte is the most recent foreign leader to visit Washington, D.C., as President Biden attempts to strengthen a number of critical global alliances that he thinks will help resist Russia and China’s escalating assertiveness. On Friday, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida met with President Joe Biden, and the two leaders pledged to enhance Japan’s military posture and condemned the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Mr. Biden has also attempted to convince the Dutch and the Japanese to join American efforts to restrict China’s access to semiconductors that may be used to improve its military technology.

Recent assaults on the Dnieper have put pressure on Western countries to enhance their economic and military help to Kiev. Mr. Rutte’s desire to provide a Patriot system followed a decision by American authorities in late December to equip and train Ukrainian forces. Tuesday afternoon, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky thanked the Dutch prime minister on Twitter “for the desire to deploy the Patriot air defence system to Ukraine.”

However, pressure has also increased on Germany and the United States to follow Britain’s example and pledge to deploy tanks to Ukraine, despite neither government having made such a commitment.

On Tuesday, President Biden called German Chancellor Scholz. The administration said that the two presidents “expressed their firm support for Ukraine and criticised Russia’s assault.”

In addition to promoting an unified front against Russia, Mr. Biden believed that meeting with world leaders in person would help garner support for the extensive limits his administration imposed in October on the sale of semiconductors and chip-making equipment to China. Officials in the United States think the technology can be used to power supercomputers and armament systems that may one day pose a danger to the country.

U.S. authorities have been negotiating with the Netherlands and Japan, manufacturers of the world’s most sophisticated equipment for producing semiconductors, for many years to restrict the kind of technology they export to China.

The restrictions imposed by the Biden administration included limitations on foreign-made semiconductors produced using U.S. technology. However, the United States refrained from regulating foreign-made manufacturing equipment, such as those manufactured by the Dutch company ASML.

The United States manufactures a significant portion of the most modern equipment required by worldwide semiconductor fabs. According to Emily Kilcrease, a senior scholar at the Center for a New American Security, the new limits have been “like punching a hole in every chip fab in China that matches the technical standards of the guidelines” in the near term.

She said that the limitations may become less effective over time if foreign businesses like as ASML or Japan’s Tokyo Electron are enticed by China’s enormous market to create and sell their own copies of U.S. technology.

American businesses assert that the measures will place them at a competitive disadvantage vis-à-vis overseas rivals. This year, Lam Research, a producer of chip-making technologies, anticipates a revenue increase between $2 billion and $2.5 billion. Another equipment firm, Applied Materials, has provided similar forecasts.

The Biden administration had wanted to announce its October guidelines in concert with allies, including the Netherlands, Japan, South Korea, Israel, and the United Kingdom, and had spent months in conversation with them.

However, despite the fact that many of these nations view Beijing as a major danger to national security, they have been unwilling to shut off vital trade with China. In both Japan and the Netherlands, there have been doubts over the legal authority to impose limits similar to those in the United States, as well as substantial technical debates regarding which technologies to ban.

Gregory Allen, a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, stated that foreign governments appeared to be pushing for the agreement to be expanded to include countries such as South Korea and Germany to ensure they are not put at a disadvantage commercially by joining the United States.

Chris Matthews
Chris Matthews
I am a Political News Journalist of The National Era
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