Murphy Champions NDAA Provisions to Counter Russian Influence in Latin America

Murphy Champions NDAA Provisions to Counter Russian Influence in Latin America

Daniel Molina
Daniel Molina
|
July 19, 2022

Late last week, the House passed the bipartisan defense bill, which includes provisions that were included by Florida Rep. Stephanie Murphy (D). the provisions address potential threats from Russia and China, and Florida lawmakers have warned of the national security threat that Russia poses to both the United States and Latin America given its relationship with Venezuela.

Taking to Twitter to champion the provisions included in the bill, Murphy commented that "Putin's Russia is attempting to grow its foothold in the Americas," adding that the provisions would ensure "DOD... prepare a report on these efforts recently passed the House. With this report, our country can develop an effective counter-strategy against expanding Russian influence."

Amidst the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine, a bipartisan group of lawmakers have warned that Russia poses a potential national security threat to both the U.S. and Latin America considering its growing relationship with Venezuela.

Earlier this year, during an interview with The Floridian, Donalds commented on the issue, affirming that the United States must strengthen its relationship with Latin America in order to push back against the threat that Russia poses.

We need to strengthen our relationships with our allies down in South America and Central America. We need to be much more aggressive in terms of making sure that we have influence in those countries here in our own hemisphere, we shouldn't be turning a blind eye to South American countries and letting Russia and/or China build these relationships," said Donalds during the interview, which can be viewed here.

Florida’s U.S. Senator Marco Rubio, whose life has been directly threatened by the Maduro regime, told The Floridian that President Putin’s presence, or “foothold” in the region, as Herrington pointed out, was merely to “threaten and intimidate the United States” and to try to put himself up on a pedestal in order to garner favor with world leaders.

“Moscow wants to continue expanding its presence in our region in order to threaten and intimidate the United States. Just like Xi Jingping, Vladimir Putin thinks that by courting our neighbors with false promises and making deals with dictators and anti-American governments in the hemisphere, the world will recognize him as the leader of a great power,” said Sen. Rubio, adding that, “It should surprise no one that a thug like Putin sees a friend in narco-dictator Nicolás Maduro.”

Another U.S. lawmaker, Rep. Michael Waltz, agrees that Russia continues to use “misinformation” to cause chaos and undermine world nations, including those Western Hemisphere countries like Colombia.

“Adversaries of the U.S., including Russia and Iran, continue to meddle in the Western Hemisphere in hopes of dividing U.S. partners in the region. Their continuous attempts to peddle misinformation come both in the form of online misinformation campaigns and state-sponsored media influence,” stated Rep. Waltz in a statement to The Floridian. “ The Biden Administration needs to utilize resources including the State Department’s Global Engagement Center to actively promote the democratic values and the benefits of partnerships in the U.S. to counter these campaigns.”

When the defense bill was passed, Murphy released a statement, commenting on the provisions included in the bill.

In her statement, Murphy praised the provisions, noting that the bill would "deliver the largest service member pay raise in decades, as well as measures to help deter Russian and Chinese aggression and enable the U.S. military to increase assistance to our allies and partners like Ukraine." Murphy added that "these investments will ensure our military forces have everything they need to combat the complex array of international threats and domestic challenges our nation faces.”

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Daniel Molina

Daniel Molina

Daniel Molina is an award-winning senior reporter based in Miami. He holds a bachelor’s degree in English Literature from Florida International University. His hobbies include reading, writing, and watching films.

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