Troubling Questions About How Many of Our Weapons Are Going to Ukraine and If They’re Getting to Frontlines – Opinion

In March, Congress approved a bill that allocated $13.6 billion for Ukraine’s aid. Joe Biden demanded $33 trillion more. Also on April 28, the Senate passed Lend-Lease legislation regarding weapons for Ukraine — which means that Biden can send them virtually anything except nuclear weapons without having to come back to the Congress for approval. Unlike ten Republicans, virtually all the Congressional Republicans voted for this. Why would you give Joe Biden more power when he’s already shown how horrible he is at everything?

At the time, I was asking questions. What does it mean for us as far as our supplies go if Biden can give them weapons out of our stocks? And how are we ensuring the aid is getting where it’s supposed to be going?

Some U.S. officials now express concern over our depleting stockpiles, as we give away so many weapons.

Washington Post

Biden requested $33 billion more in Ukraine assistance, almost two-thirds would go to security expenditures. Kirby stated that the package would be sufficient to sustain Ukraine for another five months. Congress has not yet approved the funding, and there are concerns about how quickly defense contractors would be able to meet the government’s demands to replenish U.S. stockpiles to ship Ukraine what it needs.

“This is pretty unprecedented, the amount of munitions that are being used right now,” the Pentagon’s acquisition chief, Bill LaPlante, told reporters Friday.

If we suddenly get attacked, where do that leave us? Is China going to use this chance to attack Taiwan when they are aware that we funnel a large amount of weapons to Ukraine? Now, I don’t think they’re going to in the face of things not going well for Russia after invading Ukraine. We must be prepared for every possibility. It is possible for them to decide now is the right time, while they are already committed somewhere else.

Senators raised concerns about Lloyd Austin, Secretary for Defense.

Austin was not able to elaborate on these minimum levels. However, Sen. Roy Blunt of Missouri noted that the U.S. sent approximately 5,000 Javelins as well as 1,400 Stingers, which comprise 33%, 25%, and 25%, respectively, to Ukraine. Sen. John Boozman, R-Ark., described the state of the missile inventory as “very thin.”

Blunt and Jon Tester, a Democratic senator from Montana, expressed concerns that supply chain and cold production issues could hinder replenishment. The Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman, Army General Mark Milley was also pressed by the pair to discuss the speed at which the weapons can be replenished.

Austin told senators that “it was not only possible” to replace some of the stockpiles within a year, but “we will do that.” [….]

Last month, defense industry experts informed the Senate Armed Services Committee that pandemic-related problems with supply chains and hiring as well as long-term neglect in production capacity may delay replenishment for some weapons by as much as five years.

What if the bad actors listen and then act in that year, five years or less? This seems like an extremely bad idea.

Austin revealed that $33 billion Biden has requested is going to Ukraine. It will also be used to purchase new stockpiles.

The passage of the $33Billion Supplemental Ukraine Aid Package, which the White House submitted to Congress last week will be required in order to finance the restocking campaign. A total of $16 billion would be allocated to Defense Department. This includes $6 billion for additional weapons systems and weapons for Ukraine, and $5 billion for withdrawing more weapons from U.S. stockpiles.

“This will help us to not only replenish our stockpiles but also replace some of the capability we’ve asked our partners and allies to provide,” Austin said.

So we’re not only depleting our stockpiles, we’re paying to build up the stockpiles of other countries.

Then the other question was how do we know that the weapons are getting where they’re supposed to be going? Wasn’t this the country that Joe Biden accused of having a lot of corruption when he was talking about why he threatened the prosecutor? Javelins and Stinger missiles are easily transportable — how do we make sure they aren’t being laundered out the back door for other purposes?

Several senators called for the Pentagon to be more transparent and watchful as it steps up its weapons deliveries to ensure that equipment is moving to Ukraine’s front lines. Patty Murray (D-Wash.), said that she heard repeatedly from logistics personnel that weapons, ammunition, and armor have been blocked from certain front-line units due to diversion.

“Are we making sure that none of these weapons are falling into the wrong hands? Is there any way to even do that?” Tester asked.

You’re going to love Austin’s response to that question. He said, “It was difficult to track weapons once they were moved into Ukraine.”

“We have to depend on the Ukrainians at this point to do the right thing and make sure that they are prudent and careful about how they issue these weapons out and account for these weapons,” he said.

Oh, that’s so reassuring. Seriously? We’re giving them our weapons but not checking where they’re going? We just gave Joe Biden permission to use any of our stocks. Republicans! Are you really paying attention? Are you thinking what?

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