The U.S. on Tuesday announced it will provide an additional $625 million in military aid to Ukraine, including advanced rocket systems, again prolonging the country’s war with Russia.
The move comes as Americans face record inflation and a looming economic recession.
President Joe Biden provided details on the latest package, which includes High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems, or HIMARS, artillery systems ammunition, and armored vehicles, in a call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. Vice President Kamala Harris joined the leaders on Tuesday’s call.
This round of military aid marks the first time the U.S. has sent additional HIMARS to Ukraine since late July. The systems—the latest assistance includes four additional HIMARS and will bring the total number sent to Ukraine to 20— have become a key tool in Ukraine’s ability to strike bridges that Russia has used to supply its troops, enabling Ukrainian forces to make inroads in Russia-controlled regions.
The U.S. in recent weeks also provided funding through a separate program — the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative — so another 18 HIMARS can be purchased through longer-term contracts. USAI funds are being used as part of the effort by the U.S. and Western allies to ensure Ukraine’s forces are trained and equipped to defend their country in the years to come. But those contracts will take several years to fulfill.