US rushes ANOTHER package to Ukraine with Russia’s momentum stalling
The Biden Administration is sending more drones, ammunition, and armored vehicles to aid Ukraine in its fight against Russia‘s invasion, as Ukraine continues to find ways to hit Russia with long-range rockets.
The latest package the Pentagon is announcing totals $775 million, and contains 16 Howitzer systems, 1,000 Javelin systems that have been hammering Russian armor, as well as an undisclosed number of HARM missiles that go after radar systems.
Also included are 15 ScanEagle drones, a low-altitude unmanned aerial vehicle made by Boeing, as well as 40 MRAPS, tactical vehicles meant to withstand improvised explosives.
The drones can be used for surveillance, and are launched using a pneumatic launcher without need of an airfield.
‘These capabilities are carefully calibrated to make the most difference on the battlefield and strengthen Ukraine’s position at the negotiating table,’ said Secretary of State Antony Blinken in a statement announcing the package.
The Biden Administration announced another $775 million in military aid to Ukraine
The package also includes 2,000 anti-armor rounds, as Ukraine seeks to continue to hit Russian tanks and prepares for a possible offensive to try to roll back Russian territorial gains.
There were explosions Thursday night near bases in Russian-controlled areas of Ukraine and inside Russia, as Ukraine’s forces improve their ability to carry out long-range strikes.
That came after huge explosions in Crimea, in strategically important territory Russia seized from Ukraine in 2014.
Video reportedly of a Russian T-90 tank exploding
Here a Russian BMP runs over mine in Donbas amid Ukraine conflict
President Joe Biden has sent a series of military aid packages since the February invasion, which followed US intelligence warnings
The package includes 15 ScanEagle drones, a low-altitude unmanned aerial vehicle made by Boeing
40 Mine-resistant, ambush-protected vehicles (MRAP) vehicles are included
A western official said the event disabled half of Russia’s naval air fleet, after already suffering the stinging loss of its flag ship, the Moskva. Russia considers the attack an escalation.
‘We want to make sure that Ukraine has a steady stream of ammunition to meet its needs, and that’s what we’re doing with this package,’ said a senior Pentagon official, Yahoo News reported.
The 19 packages since Russia’s unprovoked invasion February 24 have now totaled $10 billion.
What’s included in the latest $775 million package for Ukraine
Additional ammunition for High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS)
16 105mm Howitzers and 36,000 105mm artillery rounds
15 Scan Eagle Unmanned Aerial Systems
40 MaxxPro Mine Resistant Ambush Protected Vehicles with mine rollers
Additional High-speed Anti-radiation missiles
50 Armored High-Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicles (HMMWV)
1,500 Tube-Launched, Optically-Tracked, Wire-Guided (TOW) missiles
1,000 Javelin anti-armor systems
2,000 anti-armor rounds; Mine clearing equipment and systems
Demolition munitions; Tactical secure communications systems
Night vision devices, thermal imagery systems, optics, and laser rangefinders
Source: Department of Defense
‘You are seeing a complete and total lack of progress by the Russians on the battlefield,’ said the official, who added: ‘You are seeing the Russians still paying a high price with Ukrainian attacks, especially using that HIMARS system’ for rocket attacks.
An official said the war was currently at a ‘near operational standstill,’ ABC News reported.
There are also increasing concerns by Ukraine and western allies that Russia will seek to lock in territorial gains by holding referendums in captured areas they control, with the clock ticking on opportunities to advance before winter.
There was more information out of Great Britain about the huge extent of Russia’s losses.
A daily intelligence report by the British defense ministry said Moscow had lost a large number of battle tanks because they were not equipped with explosive reactive armor technology – or ERA.
‘Used correctly, ERA degrades the effectiveness of incoming projectiles before they hit the tank,’ the report said. ‘This suggests that Russian forces have not rectified a culture of poor ERA use, which dates back to the First Chechen War in 1994.’
The report added: ‘It is highly likely that many Russian tank crews lack the training to maintain ERA, leading to either poor fitting of the explosive elements, or it being left off entirely.’
British officials said ‘the war has seen numerous failures by Russian commanders to enforce low-level battle discipline’, adding: ‘The effect of these failures is likely a significant factor behind the poor performance of Russia’s forces.’
Data released by Ukraine’s military said their troops have killed more than 44,000 Russian soldiers and destroyed some 1,800 tanks. Other estimates, such as from Oryx – a military blog that has tracked Russian losses since the start of the war – put Moscow’s equipment losses even higher.
Oryx, which tracks losses based on visual confirmation, says more than 5,000 Russian military vehicles have been either destroyed, damaged or seized by Ukraine’s forces – including more than 3,000 tanks.