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Rep. Michael McCaul speaks during the GRAMMYs On The Hill Awards Dinner at The Hamilton on April 27, 2022, in Washington, D.C.Photo by Paul Morigi/Getty Images for The Recording Academy

(American Thinker) — When has a Republican been in D.C. too long? When he prioritizes the Ukraine war over the disintegration of the U.S.-Mexican border. And not just any Republican, but a Texas Republican with a pivotal House leadership role.

Michael McCaul is the Texan. He chairs the House Foreign Affairs Committee. He should know better than most about the dangers flooding across the southern border, dangers posed by illegals, drugs, human trafficking, and cartels. More ominously, the cartel wars raging throughout Mexico threaten to venture north into the U.S. Tens of thousands of Mexicans are dying in those brutal wars. Are American lives next?

The Freedom Caucus, having wrestled important concessions from House leader Kevin McCarthy (R–CA) in exchange for the speakership, has another more critical job: stop McCaul and other House Republican war hawks from escalating America’s involvement in the Ukraine war, where the U.S. has no vital interests or national security stakes. Shift the focus to the southern border and the growing threats there.

In Ukraine, increased American military aid and bold talk out of Washington about assembling a “Coalition of the willing” to oppose Russia more aggressively politically and, perhaps, militarily is sheer folly. The smug assumption is that conflict with Russia can be contained to Ukraine. Conceit and miscalculations may trigger a U.S.-Russian war. A war that likely won’t be limited in scope.

After two devasting twentieth century wars, Europeans grasp that fighting Russia would result in widespread carnage. Germany had its arm twisted to provide fourteen Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine. President Joe Biden announced that the U.S. plans to send 31 Abrams tanks. With the preponderance of Russian military assets in Ukraine and a build-up of assets just across the border in Russia – estimates range in the hundreds of thousands of troops – 44 tanks won’t tip the balance for Ukraine.

Biden’s latest military aid package to Ukraine carries a $2.5 billion price tag. Total outlay in aid to Ukraine is a staggering $26 billion.

Americans have every right to demand answers to why Biden and Congress have no hesitancy in sending $26 billion in aid to a faraway nation at war but allocate only a pittance to secure the U.S.-Mexican border.

Why is McCaul leading the fight to aid Ukraine but not leading the charge to stop the ruin of his native Texas and the rest of his country?

Per CNN (via Breitbart) McCaul, being very condescending in that Washington establishment way, lectures us “that skeptics of aid to Ukraine do not understand “what’s at stake.” McCaul doubled down, saying, “We have to educate our [fellow House] members. I don’t think they quite understand what’s at stake.”

We dumb skeptics, and McCaul’s witless House colleagues, just don’t get it. But it’s McCaul who either doesn’t understand what’s at stake along the border or, worse, doesn’t much care.

An estimated 5.5 million illegals (slightly less than metro Atlanta’s population) have poured across our vanished southern border since Biden was sworn in as president. How many more millions will cross before Biden’s term ends in January 2025?

What about the fentanyl that’s entering the U.S. by truckloads? Fentanyl produced by Mexican cartels with China’s help? In 2021, Fentanyl killed an estimated 100,000 Americans. The death toll is being tallied for 2022.

While the mounting national crisis due to the open southern border has taken tens of thousands of American lives and risks greater death, the Washington establishment is invested in the Ukraine war – a war that D.C. is pushing into a proxy war between Russia and the U.S.

The Biden administration could have sought to be an honest broker, seeking to mediate differences between the parties, defusing tensions to seek an honorable and fair resolution.

The Biden administration could have recognized Russia’s legitimate security concerns resulting from the ongoing advance of NATO east toward and, eventually, into Ukraine. Russia no more wants NATO in Ukraine (it tolerates NATO in the Baltic states) than the U.S. would have abided the Warsaw Pact moving into Canada or Mexico.

The quid pro quo would have been Russia giving ironclad assurances that Ukraine would have its independence respected as a non-aligned nation, with security guarantees from the U.S. and/or key European nations (not NATO). Eastern, Russian-populated regions of Ukraine would have been granted autonomy. The Crimea has been part of Russia since the 1700s. Conceding Crimea to Russia would have been necessary.

But an agreement along those lines – however unpalatable to U.S. war hawks – would have spared Ukrainians not just the death and devastation experienced to date, but that which is imminent. Ukraine – unlike Serbia, which sparked WWI – would have ceased being the locus of what may be a new and unquantifiable deadly major European war.

It’s worth repeating: the U.S. has no vital interests or national security concerns in Ukraine. U.S. war hawks offer only vague assertions why they’re inching the U.S. ever closer to open conflict with Russia.

From the outset of the Russian invasion, we’ve heard relentless cries from war hawks and the media that we had to “defend democracy” in Ukraine. That’s an old, sanctimonious Woodrow Wilson trope that post-WWII gave us bloody wars in Korea, Vietnam, and Afghanistan. Korea ended in stalemate, while both Vietnam and the 20-year conflict in Afghanistan were lost.

As to democracy in Ukraine, Zelensky acts more like a tyrant. Corruption in Ukraine is epic. Time had this to say in its lede in a January 25 article about Ukrainian corruption:

The Ukrainian government unveiled a major shake-up of government leadership this week, in an apparent effort to root out corruption at the highest level.

Georgia Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene has demanded an audit of U.S. aid to Ukraine. Where taxpayer money is going is the right question to ask. Moreover, Greene had previously called for an end to military aid.

Calls to defend democracy in a distant country failed to rally Americans. Americans have no desire to send their sons and daughters off to fight and die in Eastern Europe.

Now, McCaul has dusted off an old rationale for increased U.S. involvement Ukraine. For McCaul, the “Domino Theory” is back in vogue. The same theory that JFK and LBJ used to spin American engagement in what became the Vietnam tragedy.

Again, via the Breitbart article, McCaul makes this claim while offhandedly pivoting to the border:

‘If Ukraine falls, Chairman Xi in China’s going to invade Taiwan. It’s Russia, China. Iran is putting drones in Crimea, and North Korea is putting artillery into Russia,’ he explained to CNN. ‘They have to understand the case. And they talk about the border, not mutually exclusive at all. We can do both. We’re a great country. We can walk and chew gum at the same time.’

McCaul asserts that the southern border and Ukraine needn’t be mutually exclusive, but he falls short here, too.

The preeminent threat to the U.S. lies along its’ southern border. Mexico roils with cartel wars. The U.S.-Mexican border is a hemorrhaging wound; Americans know it. The real war America needs to fight lies just south of McCaul’s district.

America is a great nation that’s $31 trillion in debt. Profligate spending by Congress created inflation. Biden’s hostility to conventional energy sent costs rocketing. A recession looms. Cities are sumps of homelessness and crime. Antifa is back on the streets. Churches are vandalized by pro-abortion terrorists. Corruption is rife in the FBI and CIA. The military is woke and military stockpiles are being depleted.

A great nation knows to prioritize, Congressman McCaul. You don’t.

Reprinted with permission from American Thinker.