By DoD News
By C. Todd Lopez
Since Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine last year, the United States has remained committed to providing the Ukrainian armed forces with the equipment and security assistance needed to fight off Russian invaders and secure their nation’s sovereignty.
In the U.S., support for Ukraine has mobilized the defense industrial base in ways that haven’t been seen in decades. Industry partners across the DIB have stepped up to meet that mobilization by manufacturing the equipment and providing the capabilities needed to support U.S. commitments.
Since the Feb. 24, 2022, Russian invasion, the U.S. has committed approximately $44 billion in security assistance to Ukraine. Assistance has been provided through either presidential drawdown authority, where equipment is pulled from the military’s inventory and sent overseas, or through the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative, where the government contracts directly with industry to send new equipment to Ukraine once it’s ready.
When capability is pulled from existing U.S. inventory, it must be replaced to ensure U.S. military units maintain their own readiness. As of mid-November, the department has obligated nearly $17 billion toward purchasing replacements for the equipment that was sent to Ukraine from U.S. stocks.
At the same time defense contractors are busy building new equipment to replace what has been sent overseas, they’re also manufacturing new capabilities to fulfill the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative orders. DOD has obligated more than $10 billion in funds though that initiative.
Coast-to-coast, the Defense Department’s more than $27 billion in obligations for PDA replenishment and USAI orders are directly impacting prime vendors and critical suppliers in 37 states.
“Across the board, the response of our U.S. industrial base to meet Ukraine’s defense needs has been truly historic,” said William LaPlante, undersecretary of defense for acquisition and sustainment. “It’s been a nationwide effort that spans the full spectrum of our supply chains in nearly every capability area. While there’s no question we still have significant work ahead of us to fully rebuild a modern defense industrial ecosystem, we should not lose sight of what we’ve been able to achieve together with our partners in industry over the past 21 months.”
The department has committed some $3.3 billion in funding across 18 states to help defense contractors both expand and modernize existing production lines and add new lines entirely. Contractors are making, among other things, the 155 mm artillery round, the Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System, and Stinger and Javelin missiles.