After squandering $111B on military aid for Ukraine, Biden administration is asking for yet more funds
By Belle Carter // Dec 13, 2023

President Joe Biden's White House, by its own admission, has already gone through $111 billion in military aid for Ukraine and is "out of money and nearly out of time" to aid the beleaguered nation. That is why it is begging the Congress to approve additional funding.

In a letter to congressional leaders, Shalanda Young, director of the Office of Management and Budget, said: "I want to be clear: without congressional action, by the end of the year we will run out of resources to procure more weapons and equipment for Ukraine and to provide equipment from U.S. military stocks." The request identified border security, allies in the Indo-Pacific, Israel and Ukraine. About $61 billion covered money for Ukraine, which included $30 billion to restock defense department equipment sent to support the country after Russia invaded in February 2022.

As per the correspondence addressed to the House and Senate, Young said a failure to provide more funding would "kneecap Ukraine on the battlefield, not only putting at risk the gains Ukraine has made but increasing the likelihood of Russian military victories." She added that there is "no magical pot of funding available to meet this moment." She added that the Department of Defense already used 97 percent of the $62.3 billion it received as of mid-November. The State Department has run through all of the $4.7 billion in military assistance it received as well, including money for humanitarian assistance and economic and civilian security assistance. "We are out of money to support Ukraine in this fight. This isn't a next-year problem," she insisted, pointing out that the time to help a democratic Ukraine fight against Russian aggression is right now and it is time for Congress to act.

This latest plea came after the White House asked Congress to act on a $100 billion supplemental funding request back in October, arguing that it would "advance our national security and support our allies and partners."

Furthermore, House Speaker Mike Johnson said last week he was confident Ukraine and Israel funding would be approved, although the two should be handled separately. This is because the Ukraine funding is linked to changes in U.S. border policy, which is a red line for many Democrats. "Of course, we can't allow [Russian President] Vladimir Putin to march through Europe. And we understand the necessity of assisting there," Johnson stated. "If there is to be additional assistance to Ukraine, which most members of Congress believe is important, we have to also work on changing our own border policy."

Meanwhile, the "National Defense Industrial Strategy" is set to be released by the Pentagon in the coming weeks but the agency warned that the U.S. defense industrial base "does not possess the capacity, capability, responsiveness, or resilience required to satisfy the full range of military production needs at speed and scale." It noted that the country built the best weapons in the world, but it could not produce them quickly enough.

Biden sends Israel large bunker-buster bombs for Gaza War

Unlike in Ukraine where the U.S. has published regular updates on some of the weapons it has provided to support Kyiv's fight against the Russian invasion, Washington has disclosed little about how many and what types of weapons it has sent to Israel during the current conflict, not even the transfer of 100 BLU-109, 2,000-pound bunker-buster bombs. According to officials knowledgeable on the matter, the surge of arms began shortly after the Oct. 7 Hamas attack and has continued in recent days. It included roughly 15,000 bombs and 57,000 artillery shells.

This kind of support to the country by Biden's regime raises concern among critics. The U.S. is urging Israel to consider preventing large-scale civilian casualties while supplying many of the munitions deployed. The U.S. even airlifted on C-17 military cargo planes flying from the U.S. to Tel Aviv hundreds of millions of dollars in munitions. "I made clear that after a pause, it was imperative that Israel put in place clear protections for civilians, and for sustaining humanitarian assistance going forward," Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in Dubai on Friday.

For security analysts, the weapons transfers could undercut the administration's pressure on Israel to protect civilians. "It seems inconsistent with reported exhortations from Secretary Blinken and others to use smaller-diameter bombs," Brian Finucane, a senior adviser at the nonprofit International Crisis Group and a former attorney-advisor at the State Department, said.

Israel's military claimed it already took precautions to protect civilians, though, in the initial days of the war, its air force also said its strikes were causing "maximum damage." Israeli officials have also said they have a limited capacity for precision strikes because its forces are stretched thin. (Related: Almost TWICE the total tonnage of the Hiroshima atomic bomb has already been dropped on Gaza by Israel – that's why the place looks NUKED.)

Head over to WeaponsTechnology.news to read more about the military assistance the U.S. continues to supply to Ukraine and Israel.

Sources for this article include:

TheGuardian.com

TheHill.com

WhiteHouse.gov

WSJ.com



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