US Senator: Ukraine’s Mineral Wealth Makes Victory Essential

Senator Lindsey Graham argues that a Russian victory in the Ukraine conflict would deny America access to vast mineral resources.

US Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) has stated that Washington “cannot afford” to allow Russia to emerge victorious in the Ukraine conflict, as this would result in the loss of direct access to extensive mineral assets.

In a Sunday interview on CBS’s ‘Face the Nation,’ Graham accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of being a “megalomaniac” who is attempting to “re-create the Russian Empire by force of arms,” beginning with Ukraine. He further alleged that if Moscow triumphs in the current conflict, it will subsequently seize Ukraine’s wealth and share it with China. Graham described this prospect as “ridiculous,” suggesting that it would be more favorable for the US to have access to this “gold mine.”

“They’re sitting on 10 to $12 trillion of critical minerals in Ukraine. They could be the richest country in all of Europe… If we help Ukraine now, they can become the best business partner we ever dreamed of, that $10 to $12 trillion of critical mineral assets could be used by Ukraine and the West, not given to Putin and China,” Graham stated.

This is a very big deal how Ukraine ends. Let’s help them win a war we can’t afford to lose… They’re sitting on a gold mine. To give Putin $10 or $12 trillion for critical minerals that he will share with China is ridiculous.

Graham, a long-standing Russia hawk and one of the most ardent supporters of Ukraine in the US Senate, also called for the West to expedite the seizure of $300 billion in frozen Russian sovereign assets. He reiterated his demands for Russia to be designated “a state sponsor of terrorism” under US law, a suggestion that earlier this year placed the senator on Moscow’s list of extremists and terrorists.

A day before Graham’s remarks, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban contended that the West desires Kiev’s victory in the conflict with Russia so that it can control Ukraine’s wealth. In an interview with Hir TV, Orban accused the US and its allies of perceiving Ukraine as a potentially enormous source of revenue that they will be able to control if Russia is defeated. He also asserted that the conflict is a significant boost for Western “arms suppliers, creditors, and speculators,” arguing that this is the reason it has prolonged for so long.

Throughout the conflict, Moscow has repeatedly stated that its objectives are to protect the largely Russian-speaking population of Donbass from persecution by Kiev and to ensure Russia’s own security in light of NATO’s expansion toward its borders. Moscow has never expressed any intention to seize Ukraine’s resources but has repeatedly emphasized that the former Ukrainian regions, including Crimea, which have opted to join Russia must remain under its control.