Published: 2023-05-19 12:22
Last Updated: 2023-06-02 00:47
The US administration has made an accounting mistake in assessing the extent of military assistance provided to Ukraine thus far, according to CNN. Congressional and administration officials reveal that this error resulted in an additional $3 billion being included in the aid package, potentially reducing the need for Congress to pass supplementary aid before the fiscal year ends in September.
The error has caused frustration among Republicans on the House Foreign Affairs and Armed Services committees, as they believe it underestimated the level of US support to Ukraine prior to the counterattack.
The discovery of this error about two months ago has been considered a significant problem by Congress, according to statements made by Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Michael McCaul and House Armed Services Committee Chairman Mike Rogers.
Reports said that in order to compensate for the lost time, the administration should utilize the funds to provide Ukraine with the necessary missile systems and cluster munitions for a successful counterattack in the ongoing conflict.
The Pentagon initially stated that there was slightly over $2.3 billion available for Ukrainian aid before the error was found. However, following the discovery, the revised amount was approximately $5.3 billion, making it the largest aid package provided to Ukraine.
Currently, there are no plans to request additional funding from Congress before the fiscal year concludes in September. This has sparked a disagreement between administration officials and concerned lawmakers and congressional staffers who fear that the funds may deplete by midsummer.
Officials from the US Department of Defense explain that the accounting mistake occurred because the replacement value of weapons was used instead of the actual value when transferring arms to Ukraine, resulting in the allocation of additional funds.
The US has been hesitant to provide Ukraine with the ATACMS missile system, capable of reaching targets over 185 miles away, due to concerns about provoking Russia. Similarly, the shipment of cluster munitions has been resisted by the US, citing the significant danger they pose to civilians.