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U.S. Military Aid to Ukraine To Stop without Congressional Action

The “window” on U.S. aid to Ukraine is closing. Without a new bill, “Each week that passes, our ability to fully fund what we feel is necessary to give Ukraine the tools and capacities it needs to both defend its territory and to continue to make advances, that gets harder and harder,” White House National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan told reporters on Nov. 13, RFE/RL reported yesterday, a day after President Joe Biden signed into law a temporary budget bill that includes no money for more weapons to the Kiev regime.

The failure of the United States to come through with new aid would severely shake the Western coalition supporting Ukraine and embolden Russian President Vladimir Putin, experts say, RFE/RL goes on. It notes that amid the intense U.S. congressional debates this week over spending, Andriy Yermak, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s closest adviser, traveled to Washington to press Kiev’s case for more aid, meeting with White House officials and lawmakers. He also spoke on Nov. 13 at the Hudson Institute, a conservative think tank, to get his message across to a Republican audience.

The Biden administration still has about $4 billion in military aid it can tap for Ukraine under the Presidential Drawdown Authority (PDA), according to the Defense Department. The PDA is a policy tool that allows the President to quickly transfer weapons and equipment from Defense Department stocks to a foreign country. The Defense Department then replenishes its stock with new orders using the Ukraine aid allocated by Congress. However, there is only about $1 billion remaining, raising questions whether the administration will use the full drawdown authority if a new aid bill isn’t passed in time.

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