Wagswoofs – The Pentagon made an announcement on Wednesday, stating its commitment to supplying Ukraine with $250 million worth of weaponry. This allocation of military aid is expected to be the final batch unless Congress takes further action in the coming year.
The Department of Defense has announced that the Biden administration is providing a wide range of military equipment to various countries. This includes surface-to-air missiles, Stinger anti-aircraft missiles, HIMARS rockets, 155mm and 105mm artillery rounds, TOW missiles, Javelin and AT-4 anti-tank systems, and over 15 million rounds of small arms ammunition.
In a recent announcement, the Biden administration revealed that the security assistance package for Ukraine will be the last one authorized by the administration. This decision comes as a result of the supplemental spending request, which has been pending before lawmakers for several months. The White House emphasized that without legislative action on this request, no further assistance packages will be approved.
“We are still planning one more aid package to Ukraine later this month,” National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said last week. “However, when that one is done … we will have no more replenishment authority available to us.”
“We’re going to need Congress to act without delay, as we have been saying,” he added.
In a letter to lawmakers on December 18, the Pentagon’s comptroller, Undersecretary of Defense Michael McCord, cautioned that the funding allocated for Ukraine would soon run out, as stated by Kirby.
“In order to protect US military readiness,” McCord said, Wednesday’s drawdown from existing Defense Department stockpiles would be the last one for Ukraine.
According to McCord, the Pentagon plans to allocate approximately $1.1 billion from its accounts to replace inventories and reimburse Ukraine for the defense services it has provided.
“Once these funds are obligated, the Department will have exhausted the funding available to us for security assistance to Ukraine,” McCord wrote.
The Pentagon has announced the 54th tranche of equipment being sent to Kyiv since August of 2021.
President Biden requested Congress to approve an additional $61.4 billion in security assistance for Ukraine in October. This request was part of a larger emergency funding proposal of $106 billion. However, support for aiding Ukraine in defending against Russia’s invasion has been declining among lawmakers on Capitol Hill.
Republicans in the Senate are currently in discussions to form a deal that would connect Biden’s Ukraine aid request to a bill that aims to strengthen US immigration laws. However, negotiators from both sides were unable to come to an agreement before taking a break for the holidays.
Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) expressed his determination to reporters last week, stating that negotiators will be diligently working over the December and January break period. The goal is to accomplish a significant outcome as soon as they return.
Lawmakers in both the House and Senate are set to reconvene during the week of Jan. 8, with a significant task at hand: completing work on the supplemental bill before addressing the urgent matter of preventing a partial government shutdown.
Since Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, 2022, Congress has already approved approximately $111 billion in aid for Ukraine, with $67 billion allocated for military funding.