President Invokes Draw Down Authority for Most Recent Security Package to Ukraine

Near the beginning of the month, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky revealed daily combat losses of 60 to 100, urging Western nations to send more weaponry to aid Ukraine’s fight against Russian troops. Ukraine now claims losses of as much as 200 troops per day as its military struggles to push back Russian advances in its eastern Donbas region. 

Advisor to Ukraine’s president, Mikhailo Podolyak on Monday reiterated the request for more military aid in order to achieve “heavy weapons parity” with Russian forces. Taking to Twitter, the Ukrainian issued a “straightforward” request for 1,000 howitzers and 300 multiple rocket launch systems, as well as 500 tanks, 2,000 armored vehicles, and 1,000 drones. According to reporting by the Guardian news outlet, the United States had supplied a total of 109 howitzers by the end of May, and 7 multiple rocket launch systems have been committed by the UK and U.S. to date. 

Ukraine’s pleas did not fall on deaf ears. During a meeting of the Ukraine Defense Contact Group, chaired by none other than Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, representatives and defense ministers from more than 50 nations promised the delivery of needed military aid to Ukraine. Austin also took opportunity to announce yet another $1 billion security assistance package from the United States, to include multiple launch rocket systems munition, another 18 155 mm howitzers with tactical vehicles for towing, and 36,000 rounds of 155 mm ammunition. 

Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Army General Mark Milley, who was also present at this week’s meeting, was asked whether or not Ukraine could sustain the fight in light of heavy losses: “They’re fighting for the very life of their country. So, your ability to endure suffering — your ability to endure casualties — is directly proportional to the object to be attained. If the object to be attained is survival of the country, then you’re going to sustain it — as long as they have leadership, and they have the means by which to fight.” 

More than a third of the $1 billion pledged by the United States comes from presidential drawdown authority, which “allows the president in certain circumstances to withdraw existing weapons, ammunitions and material from existing U.S. military stocks and provide that to other nations.” Not including the most recently approved package, the United States has provided $4,260,000,000 in assistance to Ukraine since last year through the use of presidential drawdown authority.

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Aly is a military spouse and mom to two. She has a special interest in international security and foreign affairs, having lived overseas, worked with Sister Cities International and served as a commissioning editor for an international relations website. Aly holds a Masters in Global Studies and International Relations from Northeastern University and currently resides in Tennessee.
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One thought on “President Invokes Draw Down Authority for Most Recent Security Package to Ukraine”

  1. How can Brandon afford it? He is already bankrupting the nation’s workers with brutal energy costs. And when the nation’s faithful workers can no longer afford driving to work, who will bankroll the salaries of the ivory tower political class who drive their elite electric cruisers to ridicule John Q. Public and his reliance on legacy energy sources?