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Pentagon giving Ukraine another $2 billion in weapons

Airmen of the 436th Aerial Port Squadron load pallets of Javelin missiles to send to Ukraine at Dover Air Force Base. (U.S. Air Force photo by Mauricio Campino)
December 08, 2022

The Pentagon has awarded another $2 billion in weapons and equipment replenishments for Ukraine since mid-November, bringing the total value of military replenishment to Ukraine to $3.4 billion since the start of fiscal year 2022.

Bloomberg reported that since mid-November, the Pentagon has awarded awarded $800 million in contracts to replenish Ukraine’s weapons and equipment. The Pentagon has also provided another $1.2 billion in contracts for Ukraine’s other security spending.

According to a fact-sheet shared with Bloomberg, the latest Pentagon replenishment contracts include $363 million to unspecified companies for 155mm artillery rounds. Those artillery rounds can be used in the M777 Howitzers the U.S. and its allies have sent to Ukraine. As of September, the U.S. had sent about 126 M777 Howitzers to Ukraine, Sandboxx reported.

Additional Pentagon spending will go toward Lockheed Martin Corp. to produce more HIMARS mobile rocket systems for Ukraine.

Since Russia launched its full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February, Congress has appropriated about $66 billion in Ukraine-related aid.

That $66 billion in Ukraine-related aid appropriations includes about $17 billion in short-term military support and $10.4 billion in long-term military support, according to the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). Other aid appropriations include $9.6 billion for increase U.S. military operations in Europe and spending for humanitarian aid and direct financial support for the Ukrainian government.

According to Bloomberg the military aid to Ukraine includes about $14 billion to replenish Ukrainian weapons and equipment. With the approximately $2 billion in new aid contracts since mid-November, the Pentagon has awarded about $3.4 billion in replenishment stocks to Ukraine since the start of the 2022 fiscal year, leaving about $10.6 billion in congressional appropriations still available for the Pentagon to send to Ukraine.

Congress has awarded these aid appropriations to Ukraine throughout 2022, but it could still take years for the Pentagon to spend the money allocated for military aid.

“Procurement funds for equipment take many years to spend out because the government pays the supplier incrementally as work is done,” CSIS wrote. “For the kinds of equipment being procured to support Ukraine, it takes about a year to get onto contract, then two more years before the first item is delivered and another year or more for the remaining items to be delivered. That means that money Congress appropriates in year one does not get fully spent until year five.”

Mark Cancian, a CSIS defense analyst, told Bloomberg that these new Pentagon contracts meet “the pace DOD needs to maintain to spend the money appropriated and get equipment into the hands of the troops.” 

Even though it could take years to spend all the money Congress has put aside for Ukraine, President Joe Biden’s administration is asking for an additional $37.7 billion in Ukraine-related aid. If Congress approves the administration’s latest request, it would bring the level of U.S. money appropriated for Ukraine in 2022 to about $103 billion.

Some Republicans in the House of Representatives are pursuing a bill to audit U.S. spending for Ukraine.