What’s inside the $60 billion Ukraine aid bill?

Lorenzo Bagnato

22 April 2024 - 22:33

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The House of Representatives passed a comprehensive $95 billion foreign aid bill, including $60 billion to Ukraine. Here’s what’s inside it.

What's inside the $60 billion Ukraine aid bill?

On Saturday, April 20, the US House of Representatives passed a long-delayed foreign aid bill, sending over $95 billion in military and financial support across the world. The bill is now in the works in the Senate, where it is expected to pass within this week, and then be signed into law by US President Joe Biden.

The bill is divided into three main tranches: $61 billion for Ukraine, $26 billion for Israel (including $9 billion in humanitarian aid for Gaza), and $8 billion for US allies in the Indo-Pacific area.

The largest chunk, the one directed to Ukraine, was also the most contested. Republicans opposed additional aid to Ukraine, which is currently under invasion by Russia, for months. After worrying reports that Ukraine could fall by the end of the year, House Speaker Mike Johnson gathered enough support to pass the bill.

But what does the $60 billion to Ukraine exactly involve? And how much will it change Ukraine’s situation?

What’s inside the $60 billion to Ukraine?

Most of the aid supporting Ukraine will be spent on US territory, where the weapons manufacturing will take place.

Specifically, $23 billion will go to replenish the Pentagon’s ammunition supply for Ukraine. The Pentagon stopped sending vital stockpiles after it had run out of funding. These supplies include air defense missiles, artillery shells, and regular ammunition.

$14 billion more will be used by the Pentagon to contract the manufacturing of advanced weapons systems for Ukraine. These will include the ATACMS long-range missiles, one of the most advanced weapons in the US arsenal.

Sending ATACMS to Ukraine was another hotly debated topic, as they are generally used in offensive operations to hit targets behind enemy lines. Their use against Russia, the White House feared, could trigger a further escalation.

Ukraine first started using ATACMS missiles against Russian targets in October.

$11 billion from the package will enhance US operations in the region, including vital intelligence efforts for Ukraine. They will increase cooperation between the US and Ukrainian armies.

Finally, $8 billion will consist of financial assistance to Ukraine, including ensuring the regular functioning of Kyiv’s government.

What will this bill change?

Since the Pentagon stopped supplying Kyiv with new weapons, Ukraine struggled under the heavy weight of Russia’s war economy. The Kremlin reported steady advances across the front, though they failed to break through Ukraine’s defenses.

However, several Western officials warned that, without additional aid, Ukraine was in serious danger of losing the war.

The Pentagon claimed it’s ready to ship new stockpiles as soon as the bill is signed into law. According to military analysts, new weapons shipments could reach Ukraine’s frontlines within weeks.

While most believe this will stop the Russian advance at least for the foreseeable future, some fear it could be too late. A Russian offensive is reportedly preparing for the summer, and it’s unclear whether American aid could have an immediate impact or not.


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