Pentagon Running Out of Money for Ukraine
Oct. 3, 2023, (EIRNS)—Following growing opposition in the Congress and the failure to approve any new Ukraine aid in the temporary appropriations bill passed last weekend, many are concerned about the U.S.’s ability to continue sending aid to Ukraine. This is on top of the already low national stock of munitions, from which the U.S. has been drawing from. According to news reports, the Pentagon has $5.6 billion left in its authority to draw weapons and equipment from its own stocks to send to Ukraine. State Department spokesman Matthew Miller said during a regular press briefing yesterday, however, that funding for two other programs, the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative and Foreign Military Financing, came to a stop on Sept. 30 and would have to be extended by Congress. Miller said that the Biden administration was “calling on Congress to fully fund our request to support Ukraine’s short- and long-term security assistance, and also to allow the Pentagon to refill depleted Pentagon stocks, which is something that they’re not able to do without further action.”
Separately, the Pentagon has sent a letter to Congress warning that it is running out of money to replenish stocks of weapons and munitions that have already been sent to Ukraine. Pentagon Comptroller Michael McCord told House and Senate leaders there is $1.6 billion left of the $25.9 billion Congress provided for that purpose, reported The Associated Press. “We have already been forced to slow down the replenishment of our own forces to hedge against an uncertain funding future,” McCord said in the letter. “Failure to replenish our military services on a timely basis could harm our military’s readiness.” He added that without additional funding now, the U.S. will have to delay or curtail air defense weapons, ammunition, drones, and demolition and breaching equipment that are “critical and urgent now as Russia prepares to conduct a winter offensive.”
White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre assured the world yesterday that U.S. aid to Ukraine will not slow down despite the turmoil on Capitol Hill. “There is [a] strong, very strong international coalition behind Ukraine. And if [Russian President Vladimir] Putin thinks he can outlast us, he’s wrong. He’s wrong. And so we will have another package of aid for Ukraine soon to signal our continued support for the brave people of Ukraine,” she told reporters. The latest aid package will come later this week, an unnamed U.S. official told Politico.