On Wednesday, press secretary Jen Psaki had a somewhat tense exchange with a reporter over sending “offensive” weapons to Ukraine.
The back and forth took place during the daily White House briefing.
Psaki refuses to call Ukraine aid weapons ‘offensive. Decker: ‘The answer is yes, I mean, although you don’t want to say it’
Gray Television White House correspondent Jon Decker noted that some of the weapons included in the Ukraine assistance package included 100 grenade launchers, 5,000 rifles, 1,000 pistols, 400 machine guns, and 400 shotguns.
He then asked Psaki if these qualified as “offensive weapons.”
Psaki said, “They’re weapons that help the Ukrainian people fight against an invasion by a foreign country.”
Decker asked again, “They can be used offensively, can they not?”
“Again, what I’m talking about is weapons used to fight…” Psaki said before Decker interrupted.
“The answer is yes, I mean, although you don’t want to say it,” Decker insisted. “That answer to that question is yes. And so obviously you’re trying to make this distinction between offensive and defensive weapons…”
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Then Psaki interrupted him.
“Well we’re talking about … let me finish, let me finish, let me finish,” Psaki shot back at the reporter.
“Let me finish, because I’ll give you my point,” Decker replied. “I was finishing a point and then you can respond to my answer.”
While any firearm can clearly be used in an offensive or defensive manner, the reporter ultimately revealed his true intention: to push the Biden administration to send even more weapons to Ukraine, asking “Why not provide more offensive weapons like this to the Ukrainian military?”
Decker’s question, which reads more like a suggestion or even a plea, comes as Fox News’ Jesse Watters excoriated journalists for almost universally demanding further American involvement and escalation in the conflict.
“Most of the partisan columnists at America’s largest newspapers agree,” Watters said. “And most of the mainstream media reporters are begging for a no-fly zone.”
“The most trigger-happy people in this country seem to be journalists,” he added.
Watch Decker and Psaki’s exchange here:
Biden: ‘The American people are answering President Zelensky’s call for more help, more weapons’
President Joe Biden signed the $800 million package on Wednesday.
“The American people are answering President Zelensky’s call for more help, more weapons for Ukraine,” the president said.
JACQUI TIME: “Can you lay out for us why the administration sees MiGs as provocative and javelins and stingers as not provocative?”
Psaki: “Well… javelins and stingers are defensive weapons. MiGs are planes that are offensive weapons which are a different…military system.” pic.twitter.com/0nMNppmJgH
— Curtis Houck (@CurtisHouck) March 16, 2022