icon bookmark-bicon bookmarkicon cameraicon checkicon chevron downicon chevron lefticon chevron righticon chevron upicon closeicon v-compressicon downloadicon editicon v-expandicon fbicon fileicon filtericon flag ruicon full chevron downicon full chevron lefticon full chevron righticon full chevron upicon gpicon insicon mailicon moveicon-musicicon mutedicon nomutedicon okicon v-pauseicon v-playicon searchicon shareicon sign inicon sign upicon stepbackicon stepforicon swipe downicon tagicon tagsicon tgicon trashicon twicon vkicon yticon wticon fm
24 Feb, 2024 17:58

Mood in Zelensky’s office ‘grim’ as US aid delayed – Politico

The Ukrainian president has said that his country will lose to Russia without more American weapons
Mood in Zelensky’s office ‘grim’ as US aid delayed – Politico

The “frustration” in Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky’s office is “palpable,” Politico reported on Friday. According to the news site, the Ukrainian president is growing impatient waiting for more military aid from Washington.

The atmosphere in Kiev has been “quite grim, and frustration was palpable” in recent weeks, “a person close to Zelensky’s office” told Politico. “Almost everyone is convinced that the aid will come soon,” the source said, adding that “while the president’s office is waiting for good news from the US, it is also working to improve mobilization and war planning.”

The US has already doled out around $45 billion in military aid to Kiev, out of a total of $113 billion allocated for Ukraine. However, the $45 billion war chest has been all but expended, and US President Joe Biden is currently lobbying Congress to pass a foreign aid bill that would include another $60 billion worth of arms, ammo, and other military support.

However, the bill has been stalled in the Republican-controlled House of Representatives, with the GOP refusing to bring it to a vote unless it is tied to increased funding for border security and a tightening of US immigration law.

At a meeting in Lviv this week, Zelensky told Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer that Ukraine “will surely lose the war” if Congress fails to pass the bill, Schumer claimed on Friday.

Russian forces captured the key Donbass town of Avdeevka last weekend, driving Ukrainian forces from a stronghold that they had occupied and fortified since 2014. Zelensky insisted from the moment Avdeevka fell that the town would have remained in Ukrainian hands had the US provided him with adequate weapons and ammunition. “Unfortunately, keeping Ukraine in an artificial shortage of weapons… allows [Russian President Vladimir] Putin to adapt to the intensity of hostilities,” he said.  

The White House and the Pentagon have both warned that without more American funding, the situation in Avdeevka could soon be repeated in other Ukrainian-held cities and towns.

Aside from a worsening shortage of ammunition, Zelensky is also facing a “critical” manpower shortage, the Washington Post reported earlier this month, adding that this deficit could result in collapse along the front. Ukraine has lost more than 383,000 men since the conflict began two years ago, according to the latest tally from the Russian Defense Ministry.

Despite the scale of Kiev’s losses, Zelensky is currently aiming to conscript another 450,000-500,000 soldiers, using a mobilization law currently making its way through parliament. In an interview with Fox News on Thursday, Zelensky said that his military would soon “prepare a new counteroffensive, a new operation.”