Ukrainian servicemen move towards the front line near the town of Artermovsk, on March 8, 2023InternationalIndiaAfricaOleg BurunovThe US and its allies have already supplied arms to Ukraine worth billions of dollars, something that comes amid concerns over some of the weapons ending up on the black market.Kiev planned to begin a counteroffensive against Russian forces this month, but the lack of weapons “has pushed the launch date back indefinitely,” Ukrainian lawmaker Alexandra Ustinova told a US news outlet.
She claimed that the US military delivered “far less” arms to Kiev than what Ukrainian Defense Minister Valery Zaluzhny has requested that the Pentagon provide.
The outlet also cited an unnamed Ukrainian source as saying that “we, as a military, want to have all the weapons now, but of course it’s impossible in the current situation.”“Of course we need the jets, but it’s not a question of the coming months, to be honest,” the source added, referring to the US-made F-16 multirole fighter deliveries, which the outlet said “are still tied down in internal debates” in the Biden administration.The claims come as another US newspaper reported that even the quicker than expected delivery of American Abrams tanks to Ukraine “would not likely reach the battlefield in time for the start of an anticipated Ukrainian counteroffensive, one in which Western allies appear to have fallen short of providing the weapons that US military officials believe Kiev needs.”Earlier this week, US media reported that 31 Abrams tanks would arrive in Germany soon, with training expected to last 10 weeks. The tanks could reach Ukraine by the fall, the reports argued.The American newspaper referred to documents that were among the Pentagon’s leaked classified military assessments of the Ukraine conflict showing that “US military planners believe that 253 tanks are needed for the coming counteroffensive.”
“As of late February, however, only 200 had been committed, and of those, 60 were made by Western manufacturers — the kind of sophisticated weaponry that Ukraine has requested,” according to the documents.
This followed a US magazine quoting one leaked Pentagon document as saying that the commencement date for Kiev’s counteroffensive against Russia has been set for April 30.The document reportedly refers to military equipment deliveries and a training timetable for nine Ukrainian brigades that, with assistance from the US and its allies, “can be generated for the spring counteroffensive.” According to the documents, three more brigades are anticipated to be recruited “internally” in Ukraine.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, meanwhile, stressed that Moscow had looked into the leaked materials which first appeared in a chat on the Discord social platform earlier this month. Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov, for his part, suggested that some of the files could be part of a “deception” campaign against Moscow.
Alexei Martynov, head of the Moscow-based International Institute of the Newly Established States, a think tank, in turn told Sputnik that the leak might be the US’ attempt to divert attention from American journalist Seymour Hersh’s investigation into explosions at the Nord Stream gas pipeline network, which Hersh insists was the work of the Biden administration.“Most probably, the so-called leak is nothing more than an organized information intervention through their own media channels in order to cheer up the agenda and distract attention from the overly annoying Hersh, whom they [the US] cannot stop [from investigating] in this situation,” Martynov said.Since the start of the Russian special military operation in Ukraine, Washington and its NATO allies have sent billions of dollars worth of weapons to Kiev. This came amid concerns over the corruption in the Ukrainian government and the fact that some of the Western countries’ arms supplies to Kiev finally ending up on the black market.WorldUkraine’s Prime Minister Says Kiev Could Launch Counteroffensive as Late as This Summer12 April, 00:20 GMTRussia has repeatedly warned that the West’s military aid to Kiev would add to prolonging the Ukraine conflict and make Western countries direct parties to the standoff, thereby confirming accusations that NATO is waging a proxy war against Moscow.