US’ $1.8 billion Military Aid to Ukraine Sends A Strong Message

The United States’ offer of $1.8 billion in military aid to Ukraine as its President Volodymyr Zelensky is visiting Washington, gives a boost to Ukraine’s Military that is fighting the Russia. The military aid includes Patriot missile battery and precision-guided bombs for their fighter jets.

The timing of the announcement comes as Zelensky is making his first trip out of Ukraine since the war began and it sends a strong message of continued US support for Ukraine as the war drags on.

THE PACKAGE

The package, which was expected to be announced on Wednesday, will include about $1 billion in weapons from Pentagon stocks and another $800 million in funding through the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative, which funds weapons, ammunition, training and other assistance, officials said.

Apart from this, the US White House Communiqué said that Biden and Zelenskyy would have an in-depth strategic discussion on the way ahead on the battlefield; on the capabilities and training that the U.S. and allies would continue to provide to Ukraine; on the sanctions and export controls imposed and its continuation to tighten and reinforce that have placed significant costs on Russia’s economy and Russia’s defense industrial base; and on the economic and energy sector assistance as well as the humanitarian assistance to make life better for the people of Ukraine.

RUSSIA’S WARNING

Coming out against the US announcement, Kremlin warned that increasing the supply of US arms to Ukraine would aggravate the situation. Russia’s defense minister called for expanding Moscow’s military by at least 500,000 people.

Russian President Vladimir Putin was quoted speaking during a meeting with his top military brass as Moscow would take lessons learned in the conflict to “develop our armed forces and strengthen the capability of our troops.” He said special emphasis would go to developing nuclear forces, which he described as “the main guarantee of Russia’s sovereignty.”

Putin also said the Russian military’s new Sarmat intercontinental ballistic missile will enter service shortly. The Sarmat is intended to replace aging Soviet-built ballistic missiles and form the core of Russia’s nuclear forces. Putin has hailed its capacity to dodge missile defenses.

Zelensky and other Ukraine officials have pressed Western leaders to provide more advanced weapons, including the Patriots, to help their country in its war with Russia. The Patriot would be the most advanced surface-to-air missile system the West has provided to Ukraine to help repel Russian aerial attacks.

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