Critics from both sides of the partisan aisle took aim at the Biden administration for refusing Poland's plan to supply Ukraine with fighter jets after calling on other nations to do so.
On Sunday, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that NATO allies were allowed to send fighter jets to Ukraine and said they were in talks with Poland to do exactly that.
On Tuesday, Poland caught the administration by surprise when it announced that it would deliver a fleet of MIG-29 jets to Ramstein Air Base in Germany and allow the U.S. to dispose of them as it saw fit.
The administration first said the plan was not "tenable" and then on Wednesday, rejected it altogether.
“Our American partners rejected this proposal, because they have come to the conclusion that it was too escalatory,” said Poland's ambassador to the U.S.
“We need to be careful about every decision we make so that we aren’t making the potential for escalation worse,” said Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby on Wednesday.
Republican Sen. Tom Cotton of Arkansas led a chorus of critics excoriating the administration for the decision.
"Biden's decision to block Poland from sending MiG-29s to Ukraine is pathetic. It's weakness, and the Administration's rationale makes no sense. How are jets 'escalatory' when we are already sending Javelin missiles?"
"Sending jets for Ukrainians to use isn't escalatory—Putin's decision to invade and bomb children's hospitals is escalatory," he added in a second tweet.
"This is an utterly insane and unbelievable response from the Pentagon. The US Government must reverse course on this. We cannot win this war from a position of tepid fear. Ukraine fights for us all, we can give them the tools. Thank you to #poland," tweeted Republican Rep. Adam Kinzinger of Illinois.
Even some Democrats criticized Biden's decision.
"Poland wants to provide its MiG-29 jets to Ukraine via the US," tweeted Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.).
"This isn’t a novel concept. US gave Stingers to Lithuania & Latvia and they transferred them to Ukraine," he added. "I urge the @DeptofDefense to figure out asap how to get air assets to Ukrainians. Their survival is at stake."
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has also demanded that NATO establish a no-fly zone over Ukraine in order to give its citizens a fighting chance against the Russians. That option has been denied because of the near certainty of dragging more countries into a war with Russia.
Here's more about the war in Ukraine:
Pentagon says no to Poland's plan to fly fighter jets to Ukraine via U.S. base in Germany www.youtube.com