Gage Skidmore from Surprise, AZ, United States of America via Wikimedia Commons

Tucker Carlson isn’t backing down in his confrontation with fellow conservatives who want to provide Ukraine with more military assistance.

Indeed, fireworks between Carlson and Rep. Maria Elvira Salazar (R-Fla.) began immediately last night.


Per Mediaite:

Last week Salazar was asked if the United States should impose a no-fly zone over Ukrainian airspace, which would require shooting down Russian aircraft.

She enthusiastic replied “Of course!” in what appeared to be an impromptu interview, as ALN’s Paul Crespo described at the time. The reporter then pressed Salazar further, asking “So, conventional war with Russia?”

At that point, she politely ended the interview.

Crespo said the interaction highlighted the urgency for “articulate” and “generally well-informed” lawmakers like Salazar to become better acquainted with what enforcing a no-fly zone entails.

As he noted at the time:

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has repeatedly called for NATO to impose a no-fly zone over Ukraine, but since this would require U.S. and NATO planes to enforce it, likely bringing them into direct conflict with Russian combat jets, Biden and NATO have rejected the call.

And while I am sympathetic to Zelenskyy’s request, this is one of the few times I may agree with Team Biden.

The time to put boots on the ground, or planes in the air, in Ukraine was before the invasion began, to deter Putin, not now. Sadly, President Biden foolishly and very publicly took that option off the table well before Putin invaded.

I write about this not to bash Salazar, who I have known for well over decade, and like and respect, or to lessen the U.S. and NATO response to Vlad the Invader Putin, who must be forcefully rebuffed, but to highlight the need for calm and clarity during an emotional and dangerous time.

Returning to last night, Salazar said she knows what a no-fly zone means and that Congress should give Zelenskyy what he needs to defend his country.

Mediaite transcribed her response:

“No troops on the ground, let’s give him the MiGs and the S-300s, what he needs to defend his own airspace, so he will create his own no-fly zone,” she said. “And that’s what I think we should have done months ago. It’s embarrassing that this guy, this president who is under the bullets has come to Congress to beg for us to give him something we should have down a long time ago.”

Salazar stressed that Zelenskyy had asked for alternatives to a no-fly zone when Carlson asked if she would deny the Ukrainian president’s request for one.

At the same time, she reiterated that the U.S. can’t allow Vladimir Putin to dictate the terms and conditions on the ground.

Who do you think made the better argument? Tell us below, and — while you’re at it — let us know what you think the United States should do next!