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/ Go to the mediabankUS and Ukrainian notes and coins / Go to the mediabankInternationalIndiaAfricaUS Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced a $300 military aid package to Ukraine this week, bringing total US weapons assistance to over $35.7 billion, or about 65% of the $55 billion in arms sent by NATO to date. On top of that are tens of billions of dollars in economic “support” and humanitarian aid. Where has all this money gone? “Pursuant to a delegation of authority from President Biden, I am authorizing our 37th drawdown of US arms and equipment for Ukraine valued at $300 million,” Blinken said a press release Wednesday, vowing that Washington would “continue to stand with our Ukrainian partners.”
"Russia could end its war today," Blinken teased, evoking Biden’s remarks in February that the Ukraine crisis – which was caused by decades of NATO expansion, a Western-backed coup in Kiev in 2014, and a brutal eight-year-long war in Donbass, was somehow President Putin’s "choice," and that he "could end the war with a word." (The secretary of state left out Washington and London’s role in squashing peace talks between Moscow and Kiev last spring, naturally).
What’s in the New US Aid Package to Ukraine?
The new package of US arms assistance will include ammo for Ukraine’s High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS), artillery, howitzer and tank shells, anti-tank weapons and rockets, small arms, trucks, trailers, and spare parts. Blinken did not elaborate on the toll the additional supplies would have on the US’ warfighting capability, or the headaches associated with Kiev burning through weapons and ammunition at rates considerably faster than NATO countries’ ability to produce it.
How Much Money Total Has the US Spent on Ukraine?
The Russia-NATO proxy war in Ukraine is already one of the top 10 military entanglements in American history, with no end in sight. In 2022 alone, Congress earmarked more than $112 billion to Ukraine for military, economic, and humanitarian assistance. That’s on top of over $2.5 billion in US military aid sent to Kiev between 2014 and 2021, a $1 billion loan in 2014, and over $1.1 billion in economic support between 2017 and 2018, and $2.6 billion in new military aid announced last month.To date, Ukraine has now cost the US more (in dollars adjusted for inflation) than the 1991 Persian Gulf War, the American Civil War, the Spanish-American War, the American Revolution and Revolutionary War, the Mexican-American War, and the War of 1812. The Ukraine crisis is behind only the First and Second World Wars, Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan, whose costs ran into the hundreds of billions or even trillions of dollars.In his opening remarks at a meeting of NATO defense officials last month, Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin announced that Washington alone has contributed over $35 billion in military aid to Ukraine.On top of that is economic and humanitarian support. According to the Kiel Institute for the World Economy, the US earmarked $27.1 billion for so-called financial aid, and $4 billion for humanitarian aid, between January 2022 and February 2023.WorldPreserving Ukraine as Independent Country Not in US Plans – Russian Security CouncilYesterday, 03:41 GMT
Where is the Money Going?
Where is the aid going? Officials have admitted that they “have almost zero” idea what happens to weapons and ammo after they enter the Ukrainian “fog of war.” USAID administrator Samantha Power has assured that Washington has found no “evidence that US assistance is being misused or misspent.” These assurances are little comfort to US taxpayers amid extensive reporting on arms sent to Ukraine somehow winding up on the black market and in the hands of criminal gangs and militia groups across Europe, Africa, and the Middle East.On the economic and humanitarian aid front too, major “hiccups” have been reported, with veteran US investigative journalist Seymour Hersh revealing last month that the Zelensky government had embezzled $400 million or more on the purchase of diesel fuel in 2022.AfricaWeapons Sent to Ukraine ‘Beginning to Filter’ to Africa, Nigerian President Says3 December 2022, 04:05 GMT
What is Ukraine’s National Debt, and Who Does It Owe?
Apparently taking a page out of the US’ playbook of racking up massive debts, Kiev has nearly doubled its national debt over the past year, from $57 billion in February 2022 to over $106.2 billion a year later. Another measurement puts total Ukrainian national debt even higher – over $161.94 billion.At the start of the crisis last year, Ukrainian officials cautiously floated a proposed debt amnesty for Kiev, urging “international financial organizations” to “revise the debt policy and zero out the debts of Ukraine.”The debt reprieve talk was soon squashed, however, with Kiev not only racking up new debts, but being forced to repay old obligations to the International Monetary Fund to the tune of over $2.7 billion, plus $486 million in surcharges – more than spending on education, the environment, and other major programs combined.Western creditors have taken the opportunity to take advantage of Ukraine’s vulnerable position to push forward long-sought reforms which had been resisted even by successive post-2014 coup governments – such as easing land ownership laws to allow oligarchs and foreign financial interests to expand control over the country’s highly fertile chernozem (lit. “black soil”) agricultural land.WorldUS to Give Ukraine $4.9 Billion in Budget Support15 April, 09:25 GMTOn top of that, President Zelensky has made it abundantly clear that his government is only too happy to accommodate multinational corporations in making a healthy profit while “rebuilding” Ukraine.”It is obvious that American business can become the locomotive that will once again push forward global economic growth. We have already managed to attract attention and have cooperation with such giants of the international financial and investment world as BlackRock, JPMorgan, Golden Sachs [sic], such American brands as StarLink or Westinghouse have already become part of our Ukrainian way…Everyone can become a big business by working with Ukraine in all sectors from weapons and defense and defense to construction, from communication to agriculture, from transport to IT, from banks to medicine,” Zelensky said at a US Chambers of Commerce meeting in January.The Ukrainian president did not mention that these “locomotives” don’t work for free, and that, whether at home or in foreign countries, their primary goal and legal responsibility is and has always been to making profits for their shareholders.
How Much Money are NATO Countries Giving to Ukraine?
The Pentagon estimates overall Western military aid to Ukraine to amount to $55 billion, while non-US economic and humanitarian aid commitments currently top $60 billion.AnalysisMilitary Industrial Complex and Neo-Cons Getting Rich Off ‘Aimless’ Proxy War in Ukraine 30 March, 17:58 GMT
Why is the US ‘Helping’ Ukraine?
Washington and its allies have offered a number of lofty reasons for supporting the Ukraine proxy war, from “defending democracy” to stopping the Kremlin from its supposed drive to create “a new Russian Empire.”But reading between the lines and monitoring the remarks made by officials and Washington think tank experts reveals the true, far more cynical purpose of US policy: “weakening Russia” (according to Austin) and if possible, regime change in Moscow (according to Biden, although the White House has since retracted these remarks).Former Reagan-era National Security Council operator Oliver North may have put it best in a “quiet part out loud moment” late last year.”It’s money well spent and in my humble opinion this is very much like what Ronald Reagan did back in the 80s,” North said in a television interview last November. “[Reagan] believed in supporting freedom fighters. He did it in Latin America, he did it in Angola, Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique. He did it in Afghanistan. Those people were willing, as the Ukrainian people are, to use their blood and our bullets.”Naturally, Mr. North did not elaborate on the sorts of odious forces his boss was willing to support by funding these “freedom fighters,” nor the human toll of US policy (“their blood”), either in Ukraine or around the globe.WorldCIA Staged ‘Color Revolutions,’ Hacker Attacks Around Globe – Chinese Cybersecurity Center10:03 GMT