US Military Stockpiles “Dangerously Low” According to Report
(UnitedVoice.com) – In February, Russia launched a war on Ukraine after months of building up troops along its neighbor’s borders. Ukrainians and the West anticipated the attack but still found it shocking. After all, in 2022, it’s relatively unusual for a nation to try to take another’s territory by force without any provocation.
The decision by Russian President Vladimir Putin to invade led to widespread condemnation by the international community. The US and its allies quickly began putting together aid packages to help Ukraine fight back. Help included equipment from America’s own stockpiles, but that decision has led to negative consequences.
Drawdowns and Dwindling Stockpiles
Newsmax’s Logan Ratick recently obtained a Bank of America Securities report. It claimed the US munitions stockpiles were at their lowest levels in decades. The reason is that President Joe Biden has issued 20 drawdown orders since August 2021. That means the POTUS authorized the military to use weapons, ammunition, and other material from their stockpiles to assist other countries.
Ukraine has needed significant armament to fend off Putin’s advances. For example, on June 23, 2022, the Department of Defense announced Biden had authorized the drawdown of up to $450 million to help support the invaded nation. At the time, that was the 13th presidential order he had signed for that purpose. In the press release about that move, Acting Pentagon Press Secretary Todd Breasseale boasted that the US had committed billions in security assistance to its ally in eastern Europe.
While Biden was pledging US arms and security assistance to Ukraine, the stockpiles needed to protect America dwindled. According to the Bank of America report, the president has committed $8.4 billion through drawdowns. The Department of Defense knows there is a problem with the stockpiles, saying drawdowns have depleted some of the ammunition and ground systems to a point where it would be a problem for our country if it had to go to war.
Replenishing the Stockpiles
The silver lining is that the Pentagon isn’t just sitting on its hands while the stockpiles shrink. The government has awarded more than $1 billion in contracts to military manufacturers to replenish the inventory. Of that funding, $33 million will go to Raytheon Technologies to ramp up the High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS) production. The contractor originally planned to end production in 2021, but there is a new demand for them.
The Pentagon had also set aside $624 million for Stinger missiles and $352 million for Javelin missiles. On September 30, Biden signed a stopgap measure to keep the government running, including $12.3 billion for more Ukraine aid. A portion of those funds will go toward replacing the weapons in the US stockpiles.
Do you think the US should continue to use weapons from its own stockpiles to give to Ukraine?
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