Pentagon Finds Extra $3 Billion For Ukraine

The Pentagon has $3 billion more to send in military aid to Ukraine than it previously thought, because of an accounting error. 

The Department of Defense has drawn on existing stockpiles of equipment for its aid, partly because it can get it to Ukraine faster and partly because the Ukrainians can be trained to use it faster. When it calculates what to send, its accountants assigned a value based on what it would cost new instead of its cost after depreciation, or net book value, and therefore overestimated the value of many pieces of equipment. 

The error may even be larger than $3 billion, as the Pentagon now wants to review all the previous aid sent to Ukraine for the same errors. The U.S. has sent nearly $30 billion worth of weapons systems, vehicles, munitions and other equipment since Russia launched its full-scale invasion in February of 2022. About $37 billion has been spent on Ukraine’s security since President Joseph Biden took office, most of it since the invasion began. In addition, Congress approved $113 billion last year for Ukraine.

Members of Congress also want the Pentagon to be accountable. Sen. Roger Wicker (R-MS.) said that instead of adjusting all of its accounting to net book value, it should adopt accounting on replacement value because it could undermine the efforts of European countries assisting Ukraine. 

Rep. Mike Rogers (R-AL.), the chairman of the House Armed Services Committee and Rep. Michael McCaul (R-TX), the chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee released a joint statement describing the error as “extremely problematic.” 

“These funds could have been used for extra supplies and weapons for the upcoming counteroffensive, instead of rationing funds to last for the remainder of the fiscal year,” they said.

The United States and other members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization have assisted Ukraine with weapons and training, but munitions are being used faster than they can be replaced. Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has begged the world for more weapons as the country’s military prepares for a much-anticipated counteroffensive.

In recent months, high-value weapons like Patriot missile defense systems, have proven indispensable for Ukraine’s defense as Russia has launched countless missiles at the nation as their offensive continues.