Further $6bn in US arms for Ukraine after ‘accounting error’


    The Pentagon says it has overestimated the worth of the weapons it has despatched to Ukraine by $6.2bn – about double early estimates – leading to a surplus that might be used for future safety packages.

    An in depth evaluate of the accounting error discovered that the alternative value was used somewhat than the ebook worth of apparatus that was pulled from shares, stated Pentagon spokeswoman Sabrina Singh.

    The Pentagon beforehand made the same announcement, in Might, that it had overestimated the worth of the ammunition, missiles and different tools by about $3bn, and the determine might develop with additional investigation. On Tuesday, Singh stated ultimate calculations confirmed there was an error of $3.6bn within the present fiscal yr and $2.6bn within the 2022 fiscal yr, which ended on 30 September.

    Because of this, the division has extra cash to make use of to help Ukraine because it pursues its counteroffensive towards Russia. It come because the fiscal yr is wrapping up and congressional funding was starting to dwindle.

    “It’s simply going to return into the pot of cash that we’ve allotted for the long run Pentagon inventory drawdowns,” stated Singh.

    The Pentagon has repeatedly used presidential drawdown authority to tug weapons, ammunition and different tools off the cabinets, in order that it might get to Ukraine much more rapidly than going by means of a purchase order course of.

    Primarily based on earlier estimates introduced on 13 June, the US had dedicated greater than $40bn in safety help to Ukraine since Russia invaded. Utilizing the brand new calculation, the US has truly supplied lower than $34bn in help.

    Officers haven’t been capable of give actual totals for the amount of cash that continues to be for the drawdowns or for the Ukraine Safety Help Initiative, which offers longer-term funding to buy weapons, together with a few of the bigger air defence programs.

    The US has permitted 4 rounds of help to Ukraine in response to Russia’s invasion, totalling about $113bn, with a few of that cash going towards replenishment of US army tools that was despatched to the frontlines. Congress permitted the most recent spherical of help in December, totalling roughly $45bn for Ukraine and Nato allies. Whereas the bundle was designed to final to the top of the fiscal yr in September, a lot relies upon upon occasions on the bottom, notably as the brand new counteroffensive ramps up.

    President Joe Biden and his senior nationwide safety leaders have repeatedly said that the US will assist Ukraine for “so long as it takes” to repel the Russian invasion. Privately, administration officers have warned Ukrainian officers that there’s a restrict to the endurance of a narrowly divided Congress – and American public – for the prices of a conflict with no clear finish.

    Members of Congress have repeatedly pressed defence division leaders on how carefully the US is monitoring its help to Ukraine to make sure that it’s not topic to fraud or ending up within the incorrect palms. The Pentagon has stated it has a “strong programme” to trace the help because it crosses the border into Ukraine and to maintain tabs on it as soon as it’s there, relying on the sensitivity of every weapons system.

    Singh stated the accounting mistake wouldn’t have an effect on the persevering with supply of help to Ukraine.

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