US Reportedly Prepping Massive Weapons Package To Fast-Track To Ukraine After Congress Approves Aid

PHILIPPINE SEA (Sept. 14, 2010) - Marines assigned to the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit fire 9-mm handguns on the flight deck of the forward-deployed amphibious assault ship USS Essex (LHD 2). Essex, commanded by Capt. Troy Hart, is part of the forward-deployed Essex Amphibious Ready Group and is on patrol in the Western Pacific region in support of exercise Valiant Shield 2010. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Greg Johnson/Released)

The Pentagon is preparing a large aid package to quickly send to Ukraine as soon as President Joe Biden signs into law a long-awaited Ukraine aid bill passed over the weekend, Politico reported, citing two U.S. officials.

Department of Defense (DOD) planners have not finalized the contents of the package, but it would likely include armored Bradley infantry fighting vehicles, artillery and air defenses Ukraine needs badly, Politico reported, citing the two sources speaking on condition of anonymity ahead of the formal announcement. The upcoming tranche of aid will be significantly larger than the Pentagon’s usual $300 million package, one of the officials said, along with a third U.S. official with knowledge of the discussions.

The Pentagon intends to deliver a “big package to help meet Ukraine’s battlefield needs,” one of the officials told Politico.

U.S. officials believe Ukraine’s hope of a military victory against Russia is dwindling, and Kyiv could face defeat by the end of the year if its backers do not surge much-needed equipment, Politico reported.

Pentagon planners may include older Humvees and M113 armored personnel carriers in the package, according to Politico.

The House passed $61 billion for the Pentagon to put toward security assistance for Ukraine on Saturday. The upcoming package will finance replenishment of U.S. stockpiles as well as procuring new equipment to deliver to Kyiv.

The Senate will vote on the foreign aid package Tuesday, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said, according to CNN. It is expected to pass easily.

Biden shared with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky the administration will “quickly provide significant new security assistance packages to meet Ukraine’s urgent battlefield and air defense needs as soon as the Senate passes the national security supplemental and he signs it into law” on a call Monday, according to a White House readout.

A top Pentagon official also told lawmakers the package would be ready “within a week or two” after the president approves the aid funding, Politico reported.

 

Funding for Ukraine dried up in December. The Pentagon clawed out $300 million in apparent cost savings from previous Army contracts to put together an “emergency” aid package in March, which included 155mm howitzers and the Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System (GMLRS), according to Politico.

The Pentagon did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.


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