Ukraine’s war effort hangs in the balance as US aid runs out

On Monday, the Biden administration sent an urgent warning to Congress, highlighting the pressing need to approve tens of billions of dollars in military and economic assistance to Ukraine. The administration cautioned that without this funding, Kyiv’s war effort against Russia’s invasion might come to a standstill.

In a letter to House and Senate leaders, Office of Management and Budget Director Shalanda Young issued a stark warning, stating that the U.S. will exhaust its resources for providing weapons and assistance to Ukraine by the end of the year. This depletion, she asserted, would severely cripple Ukraine’s battlefield capabilities.

Young further elaborated that the U.S. has already depleted its funds used to support Ukraine’s economy. She emphasized, “If Ukraine’s economy collapses, they will not be able to keep fighting, full stop.”

The letter underscores the urgency of the situation, declaring, “We are out of money — and nearly out of time.”

President Biden has requested a nearly $106 billion aid package for Ukraine, Israel, and other critical needs. However, this proposal has encountered significant resistance on Capitol Hill, where skepticism regarding the extent of assistance for Ukraine is growing. Additionally, even Republicans who support the funding are insisting on changes to U.S.-Mexico border policy as a precondition for approving the aid.

This letter serves as the latest in a series of warnings from top officials as the administration intensifies its efforts to secure congressional approval for President Joe Biden’s $61.4 billion emergency funding request for Ukraine. The proposal forms part of a broader $106 billion supplemental package that Biden presented to lawmakers in October, seeking additional funding for Ukraine, Israel, the Pacific, and the U.S.-Mexico border.

Young reiterated the administration’s stance that supporting Ukraine’s military is crucial to preventing a wider war that could draw the U.S. into direct conflict with Russia if Vladimir Putin succeeds in his current offensive and subsequently attacks a NATO country.

The letter also strongly emphasizes a point that Biden and senior leaders have increasingly made to advocate for the tens of billions of dollars in funding for Ukraine and Israel: it bolsters the U.S. economy and creates jobs.

A significant portion of the money that Congress has approved for Ukraine has remained within the U.S., instead being utilized to replenish the military’s inventories of weapons and equipment that were sent to Kyiv. Biden emphasized the importance of funding to procure American-made hardware during an Oval Office address in October, making the case for Ukraine and Israel aid.

Biden’s latest security funding request would allocate over $50 billion to the defense industry, Young stated, specifically mentioning several states where air defense systems, missiles, and artillery rounds are manufactured.

“While we cannot predict exactly which U.S. companies will be awarded new contracts, we do know the funding will be used to acquire advanced capabilities to defend against attacks on civilians in Israel and Ukraine — for example, air defense systems built in Alabama, Texas, and Georgia and vital subcomponents sourced from nearly all 50 states,” Young explained.

According to Young, the majority of funding already approved by Congress has been directed towards strengthening the American defense industrial base or supporting military and intelligence operations.

“That has improved our own military readiness since DOD is buying new equipment to replace what we are sending Ukraine, jumpstarting and expanding production lines, and is supporting good-paying jobs in dozens of states across the country,” Young concluded.

In conclusion, The Biden administration’s urgent warning to Congress highlights the critical importance of providing substantial military and economic assistance to Ukraine. Without this support, Kyiv’s ability to defend itself against Russia’s invasion will be severely compromised, jeopardizing its chances of achieving a favorable outcome in the conflict.

Congress must act swiftly to approve the $106 billion aid package proposed by President Biden. This funding is essential to replenish Ukraine’s depleted supplies of weapons and equipment, stabilize its economy, and support its ongoing military operations.

The United States has a moral and strategic obligation to assist Ukraine in its fight against Russia. By providing unwavering support, the U.S. can help to deter further Russian aggression and safeguard the stability of Europe.

The time to act is now. Congress must prioritize the needs of Ukraine and approve the necessary funding without delay.

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