There is a rising sentiment that the U.S. will have to force Ukraine into a truce with Russia because of the costs and the “emptying of our
warehouses” of weapons. But there is much the political class is not saying. The stark truth is the West and the U.S. in particular is shipping to Ukraine vast stockpiles of weapons bought in the 1980s and early ‘90s at the end of the Cold War. This amounts to billions of dollars in weaponry, yes, but most of it was paid for decades ago.

Many of the munitions and weapons are obsolete or at the end of their safe storage life and facing the need for disposal. The American public is unaware that under current law it costs billions to dismantle and dispose of the old weapons, so it is actually far cheaper to give them to Ukraine to use against the Russians.

There is a smattering of new systems, such as HIMARS, Excalibur and Javelin, but not much. The M777, a towed 155 mm howitzer,
has largely been declared obsolete by the U.S. Army and not been purchased in years. I wonder if public support or Ukraine would actually
rise if the politicians actually admitted we are sending our oldest stuff to Ukraine.



Actually, it is fascinating that no one has stated we are seeing the Russian army of 2022 get destroyed by the circa-1990, second-tier Western arms coupled with Ukraine‘s 1980s-era Soviet gear.  The difference in arms is stunning. And it extends to the Chinese People’s Liberation Army, too.

It is unfortunate that President Biden is too busy Christmas shopping and getting ice-cream cones to bother awarding any contracts to U.S. manufacturers to shore up supplies of the 155 mm ammunition Ukraine is using with great success.

JAMES BARENDS

Wayne, Pennsylvania

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