The Biden administration on Tuesday announced a new massive $2.6 billion weapons package for Ukraine that includes HIMARS ammunition, missiles for air defense systems, artillery rounds, and other equipment.
The package includes $500 million in the Presidential Drawdown Authority, which allows President Biden to ship weapons to Ukraine directly from Pentagon stockpiles. The other $2.1 billion will go toward purchasing new equipment for Kyiv that could take months or years to deliver, a program known as the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative (USAI).
The funds for the new weapons are still being drawn from the $45 billion Ukraine aid bill Congress passed in December. So far, the US has authorized about $113 billion to spend on the war.
According to the Pentagon, the Drawdown Authority package includes to following:
- Additional munitions for Patriot air defense systems
- Additional ammunition for HIMARS
- 155mm and 105mm artillery rounds
- 120mm mortar rounds
- 120mm and 105mm tank ammunition
- 25mm ammunition
- Tube-Launched, Optically-Tracked, Wire-Guided (TOW) missiles
- Approximately 400 grenade launchers and 200,000 rounds of ammunition
- 11 tactical vehicles to recover equipment
- 61 heavy fuel tankers
- 10 trucks and 10 trailers to transport heavy equipment
- Testing and diagnostic equipment to support vehicle maintenance and repair
- Spare parts and other field equipment
The equipment that will be purchased under USAI includes:
- Additional munitions for National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile Systems (NASAMS)
- Nine counter-Unmanned Aerial System 30mm gun trucks
- 10 mobile c-UAS laser-guided rocket systems
- Three air surveillance radars
- 30mm and 23mm anti-aircraft ammunition
- 130mm and 122mm artillery rounds
- 122mm GRAD rockets
- Rocket launchers and ammunition
- 120mm and 81mm mortar systems
- 120mm, 81mm, and 60mm mortar rounds
- 120mm tank ammunition
- Javelin anti-armor systems
- Anti-armor rockets
- Precision aerial munitions
- Approximately 3,600 small arms and more than 23,000,000 rounds of small arms ammunition
- Seven tactical vehicles to recover equipment
- Eight heavy fuel tankers and 105 fuel trailers
- Armored bridging systems
- Four logistics support vehicles
- Trucks and ten trailers to transport heavy equipment
- Secure communications equipment
- SATCOM terminals and services
- Funding for training, maintenance, and sustainment
The new package comes as the US is hoping Ukraine will carry out a counteroffensive to regain more territory, but comments from Ukrainian officials have cast doubt on Kyiv’s capability to launch an assault. It’s also unclear if US and other Western support is sustainable as Ukraine has been using massive amounts of artillery ammunition in its battle defending the Donbas city of Bakhmut.
Last month, a Pentagon official told The New York Times that upcoming ammunition shipments were part of a “last ditch effort” to help Ukraine on the battlefield as Ukrainian forces are using artillery rounds at an unsustainable rate. According to a Pentagon fact sheet released Tuesday, the US has pledged over 1.5 million 155mm artillery rounds for Kyiv.
One thought on “US Announces $2.6 Billion Weapons Package for Ukraine by Dave DeCamp”
Maybe they should try and find out where all the money is going to before coming up with more packages.
I guess money does grow on trees.