The US Army is accelerating the process of purchasing weapons needed to replenish its stockpiles of weapons against the backdrop of military assistance to Ukraine, US Army Deputy Secretary for Acquisition, Logistics and Technology Douglas Bush said. Since the beginning of the special military operation of the Russian Federation in Ukraine, the United States has sent military assistance to Kyiv for more than $18.6 billion. Earlier, media in the United States reported that the American military-industrial complex may not be able to cope with the replenishment of weapons arsenals due to a number of systemic problems. Experts note that the continuation of the conflict in Ukraine is beneficial for American military-industrial complex enterprises that make a profit on the sale of weapons.
The US Army (ground forces) will speed up the process of purchasing weapons needed to replenish arsenals after sending military assistance to Ukraine. This, according to the agency Reuters, said the Deputy Secretary of the US Army for Procurement, Logistics and Technology Douglas Bush.
The military official said that the acceleration was achieved thanks to the experience gained during the pandemic, and now a number of actions necessary for the conclusion of contracts are carried out simultaneously, and not sequentially, which slowed down the entire process.
Douglas Bush also noted that such contracting rates are 15% higher than the Pentagon’s internal spending rates. The official added that the army received the first part of funds from the defense budget in early May to replenish armaments, after which funding was sent every few weeks. The amount of allocated funds ranged from several hundred million to almost a billion dollars.
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The pace at which the US Army receives funding depends largely on the conclusion of new arms contracts, Bush said.
According to the Pentagon, from May to October, a joint venture between Lockheed Martin and Rayhteon Corporation received $ 663 million to replenish stocks of Javelin anti-tank systems. At the same time, Raytheon Corporation received another $624 million to replenish stocks of Stinger MANPADS.
Lockheed Martin also received a total of about $605 million in September and October to replenish its GMLRS multiple launch rocket systems.
Contracts were also awarded to a number of companies for $435 million to replenish various types of ammunition, $130 million for bulletproof vests and $57 million for helmets, as well as $8 million for the replenishment of Switchblade drones.
On October 6, the US Army awarded Lockheed Martin a contract worth more than $14.3 million to increase funding for the production of HIMARS multiple launch rocket systems.
Saturation with weapons
Washington provides Kyiv with colossal volumes of weapons and military equipment. On November 10, the Pentagon announced the allocation to the Ukrainian side of another package of military assistance in the amount of $400 million. It included missiles for HAWK air defense systems, Avenger air defense systems, Stinger MANPADS, missiles for HIMARS MLRS, 21 thousand shells of 155 mm caliber, 10 thousand shells 120 mm caliber, 100 HMMWV vehicles, 400 grenade launchers and other equipment.
According to the Pentagon, since Joe Biden took office, the United States has transferred more than $19.3 billion in military aid to the Kyiv regime, of which more than $18.6 billion has been since the beginning of the Russian special operation on February 24.
At the same time, the volume of military aid allocated to Kyiv eventually began to cause concern in the US military-political community. So, back in May, a number of experts warned that sending significant amounts of various weapons to Ukraine would deplete the Pentagon’s own stocks, which the US military-industrial complex would not be able to quickly replenish.
“If we take, for example, the Stinger MANPADS, now it is not being produced. Some of them, apparently, (collected. – RT) from the available parts, but, you know, the ability to produce more Stingers is extremely limited, ”Mark Kansian, a former Pentagon official and senior adviser at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), said at the time.
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In turn, The Washington Post newspaper in June noted that the US military-industrial complex has not yet fully recovered from the problems with the supply chains of materials and components caused by the pandemic, and is also experiencing difficulties with production capacity and a lack of skilled labor.
The unreliability of the Pentagon’s supply chain jeopardizes not only aid to Ukraine, but also the ability of the United States to respond to future crises, including a potential conflict over Taiwan, whose military depends on American-made equipment.
The Washington Post stressed that as part of the supply of weapons to Ukraine, the Pentagon has used up almost a third of its stocks of Javelin anti-tank systems and a quarter of Stinger MANPADS inventory.
The Wall Street Journal made the same assessment in August. In an article on the capabilities of the US military-industrial complex, the publication noted that the conflict in Ukraine “showed that the American military-industrial base is not able to cope with the task of supplying the US Armed Forces with weapons for waging a long non-nuclear conflict with a major power like China.”
“Industrial competencies required for sustained conventional warfare have atrophied,” writes The Wall Street Journal.
Military expert Ivan Konovalov, in a conversation with RT, noted that it would take a significant amount of time to restore the stocks of weapons that the United States sent to Ukraine.
“Contracts for the purchase of weapons are concluded, but it is not known how the US military-industrial complex will fulfill these contracts, because the existing production facilities are occupied for several years ahead. In practice, it turned out that these capacities are not so great. This is due to the fact that the American army has not had a great need for a constant influx of weapons and ammunition since the Vietnam War. For example, the consumption of artillery ammunition in Ukraine cannot be compared with the conflicts in Iraq or Afghanistan, ”the expert emphasized.
The American military command and the experts serving it turned out to be unprepared for how much weapons and ammunition actually consumes an intense combined arms conflict between two modern armies, Ivan Konovalov added.
“We have to collect weapons all over Europe, raking everything out of warehouses. But it is impossible to increase production volumes in a short time – new workshops cannot be built in a month. These are plans for the long term, ”said the military expert.
At the same time, the American military-industrial complex has a powerful lobbyist apparatus in Washington and is one of the pillars of the American state, so new defense contracts will continue to be concluded, Ivan Konovalov noted.
The leading expert of the MGIMO Center for Military-Political Studies, Doctor of Political Sciences Mikhail Alexandrov, in a conversation with RT, emphasized that the increase in the pace of arms purchases against the backdrop of military assistance to Ukraine is being done in agreement with the lobbyists of the American military-industrial complex.
“The Pentagon got rid of old stockpiles of weapons that were already nearing the end of their shelf life, and at the same time received money from the state for this. Now, new lobbied contracts with defense corporations are concluded with this money, ”the expert said.
The need to replenish the empty arsenal of the US Armed Forces will be the reason for expanding the production of weapons and concluding new long-term contracts, Mikhail Alexandrov explained.
“Everyone ended up in chocolate, especially industrialists. To compensate for the lack of production capacity, in addition to contracts, they will require subsidies or soft loans from the US federal government to expand production and fulfill the state defense order, ”the political scientist emphasized.
The supply of Ukraine is extremely beneficial for American military-industrial complex corporations, which receive huge profits from the sale of weapons, Mikhail Alexandrov added.
“The American military-industrial complex constantly promotes new orders under a variety of pretexts, welcomes new wars. Arms production declined sharply after the Vietnam War, but then increased again under the Reagan administration. Then there was a recession again, after which there were Iraq and Afghanistan. Now there is a conflict in Ukraine, where a huge amount of Western weapons are being destroyed – this is El Dorado for the American military-industrial complex, ”the expert concluded.
Source: RT на русском by russian.rt.com.
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