The Pentagon said on Friday that it will supply Ukraine with an additional $2.1 billion in long-term weaponry assistance. More Patriot missile battery munitions, Hawk air defence systems and missiles, and small Puma drones that can be launched by hand will be included in the latest support package. The current influx of funds, one of the largest packages offered by the US, comes as there are signs that Ukraine is beginning – or is about to begin – the much anticipated counteroffensive to reclaim territory gained by Russia.
Unlike the more frequently sent from Pentagon stocks and delivered quickly to Ukraine, this money would be provided under the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative and would be spent over the coming months or even years to ensure Ukraine’s future security needs. The Pentagon said in a statement that the package demonstrates America’s sustained commitment “to both Ukraine’s critical near-term capabilities as well as the enduring capacity of Ukraine’s Armed Forces to defend its territory and deter Russian aggression over the long term.” The assistance will also include laser-guided rocket ammunition, an unspecified number of artillery rounds, and cash for training and upkeep. Although a number of administration officials have recognised that violence in Ukraine has escalated in recent days, much of the attention has shifted this week to the collapse of the Kakhovka dam on the Dnieper River.