US To Give $3 Billion To Ukraine On Country’s Independence Day As War Rages

Micaela Burrow 

The U.S. will announce a $3 billion aid package for Ukraine as early as Wednesday, Ukraine’s independence day, as the war to repel Russia’s invasion reaches the six month mark, The Associated Press reported.

Much of the equipment included in the package will not see battlefield use for a year or more, part of a strategic pivot by the U.S. to guarantee long-term support for Ukraine, U.S. officials knowledgeable about the subject told the AP. Drones, weapons and other supplies in the package, the largest to date by roughly $2 billion, will be supplied under the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative

Germany also announced ahead of Ukraine’s national day it would provide €500 million in new weapons in 2023, DW reported.

The U.S. has administered previous aid packages under the Presidential Drawdown Authority and included weapons and ammunition pulled from existing U.S. stockpiles to assist Ukraine’s short term needs, according to the AP.

The U.S. shift to securing Ukraine’s long-term defense posture reflects a broader change in attitudes toward Ukraine, the AP reported. NATO Secretary Jens Stoltenberg advocated for a long-term commitment to Ukraine at a virtual security conference about Crimea.

Germany also announced ahead of Ukraine’s national day it would provide €500 million in new weapons in 2023, DW reported.

“Winter is coming, and it will be hard, and what we see now is a grinding war of attrition. This is a battle of wills, and a battle of logistics,” Stoltenberg said, according to the AP.

Ukraine has danced around the question of responsibility for a series of explosions in Russian-occupied Crimea recently. In the eastern Donbas region, where some of the most intense fighting has raged, however, combat has been reduced to a slow give-and-take, the AP reported.

U.S. and Ukrainian leaders warned that Russia may escalate attacks on Wednesday, which marks both Ukraine’s day of independence from the former USSR and the six-month anniversary of the war, the AP reported.

The U.S. embassy in Ukraine Monday issued an advance warning to Americans still living in the country to evacuate as soon as possible, anticipating increased Russian bombing throughout Ukraine.

The U.S. has provided a total of $10.6 billion to Ukraine since the beginning of the Biden administration, according to the AP, most of which was disbursed after the Russian invasion.

The Biden administration has opposed sending Ukraine Army Tactical Missile Systems (ATACMS) and other munitions that could reach into Russia on the grounds that strikes on Russian soil could be seen as escalatory and drag the U.S. into open conflict with Russia. However, inconsistencies in reporting on Ukrainian strikes suggest the U.S. may have secretly supplied long-range weaponry, Politico reported.

Two U.S. officials also confirmed to Politico that the U.S. included Excalibur precision-guided munitions in an Aug. 19 package, despite the systems not being featured on a public notification, Politico reported.

The Department of Defense and the White House did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s requests for comment.

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