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Under increasing pressure, the US Army is footing the bill for support to Ukraine.

The US Army finds itself in a tight spot as it shoulders the financial burden of supporting Ukraine amidst uncertainty over funding from Congress. Over the past few months, the Army has spent more than $430 million on various operations related to Ukraine, including training Ukrainian troops and transporting equipment. This expenditure has put a strain on the Army’s budget, prompting concerns among officials about the need to divert funds from essential projects.

With no new funding specifically earmarked for Ukraine, the Army’s Europe and Africa Command, responsible for covering operational costs, faces a significant shortfall. This shortfall extends beyond Ukraine-related expenses to include other operations throughout Europe and Africa. The lack of funding jeopardizes crucial projects such as barracks construction and enlistment incentives.

Army officials warn that unless funding is secured soon, they may have to make difficult decisions and reallocate funds from less critical areas. This could deplete funds by May, affecting training exercises and equipment movement in Europe and Africa. The situation underscores the urgent need for Congress to approve funding for Ukraine and the Army’s budget for the fiscal year 2024.

Despite the funding challenges, training for Ukrainian troops continues as it is deemed mission critical. Equipment continues to be provided to Ukraine from US stocks, although new announcements of assistance packages have ceased due to the lack of funding. Lawmakers have been deliberating on a new tranche of funding for Ukraine, but progress has been slow.

The Army’s spending this fiscal year encompasses contracts, travel, transport, and supplies necessary for operations in Europe. While some expenses can potentially be replenished through supplemental spending bills, approval of the 2024 budget remains crucial for long-term stability. Delayed funding not only impacts operations in Europe but also has broader implications for national security and international relations.

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