A triple stalemate for Ukraine existential crisis

In three critical arenas — the halls of Congress, European capitals and on the battlefield — Ukraine's war effort has encountered a storm of stalemates.

In three critical arenas — the halls of Congress, European capitals and on the battlefield — Ukraine’s war effort has encountered a storm of stalemates that pose an existential crisis to the country’s future, notes Axios.

Why it matters: With much of the world’s attention focused on Israel and Gaza, President Biden and NATO’s pledge to support Ukraine for “as long as it takes” is at serious risk. The implications could be devastating for Kyiv’s democracy.

Driving the news: The White House warned Monday that without congressional action, the U.S. government will run out of resources to support Ukraine by the end of the year.

“There is no magical pot of funding available to meet this moment. We are out of money — and nearly out of time,” Office of Management and Budget director Shalanda Young wrote to congressional leaders.

Bipartisan Senate talks on a border package paired with Ukraine funding reached a breaking point over the weekend, with no further meetings currently scheduled, congressional sources tell Axios.

Leaders of the European Union — which some Republicans say should bear more of the burden for supporting Ukraine — are embroiled in a budget dispute that could threaten €50 billion ($54.2 billion) in funding for Kyiv.

Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, emboldened by the far-right’s shocking victory in the Dutch elections last month, has demanded that opening talks about Ukraine’s accession to the EU be removed from the agenda for the Dec. 14-15 European Council summit.

Ukraine’s Deputy Prime Minister Olha Stefanishyna recently described the upcoming summit as an “existential moment” for her country’s future.

On the battlefield, Russian President Vladimir Putin’s bet that his invading forces could outlast Western political will appears to be paying off.

Democrats involved in the Senate negotiations say talks have stalled because Republicans are unwilling to compromise on their desire to codify Trump-era border policies in exchange for Ukraine aid.

GOP sources deny the talks are “dead” and say Democrats have long known significant border reforms would be a prerequisite to any Ukraine deal.

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