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US Overvaluation Of Weapons To Ukraine By $3 billion May Result In Sending More Military Aid

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A grave miscalculation may result in more arms being sent to Ukraine as the Pentagon overestimated the cost of the ammunition, missiles, and other equipment it delivered to Ukraine, according to a Senate aide and a defence official. The overvaluation of the cost reached $3 billion.

This overestimation may pave the way for the delivery of further weaponry to Ukraine to aid in war against Russia.

According to two senior defence officials, the mistake resulted from giving weapons a higher value than its actual. The arms were taken from US stores and sent to Ukraine. “We’ve discovered inconsistencies in how we value the equipment that we’ve given to Ukraine,” told one of the senior defense officials to British news agency Reuters. They also said that the Congress is being made aware of the changes in the calculations on Thursday.

The defence official stated that as the Pentagon conducts a more complete investigation, it is feasible that the sum of overpriced weapons could increase over $3 billion. According to top defence sources, the Pentagon valued the weapons at replacement cost rather than its actual and depreciated cost.

From its stockpiles, the US has shipped Ukraine weaponry worth around $21.1 billion since August 2021. As the battle over the debt ceiling heats up, changing the equipment’s worth would postpone the Biden administration’s need to petition Congress for additional funding for Ukraine.

US Senator Roger Wicker, the top Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee, said “The Department of Defense’s change in evaluating the costs of arms sent to Ukraine is a major mistake. Its effect would be to underestimate future needs for our European allies. Our priority should be a Ukrainian victory over Putin. Unilaterally altering military aid calculations is an attempt at deception and undermines this goal.”

US equipment to Ukraine include diverse range of weaponry from Patriot surface-to-air missile system, High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) launchers, and a Javelin anti-tank missiles packaged under 37 Presidential Drawdown Authority.

One of the senior defense officials said, “The services – the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines – were using, the current replacement cost of the item.”

The top accountants in each area of service were informed in a note dated March 31 which approach should be adopted, citing current regulation. The senior defence officials predicted that it would take some time to complete the accounting for the equipment that had been transferred to Ukraine for billions of dollars.

For instance, ammunition for Howitzer cannons, each round costs roughly $800 today and more than 1.5 million have been shipped to Ukraine. However, one of the top defence officials claimed that the actual cost of each shell, which has been supplied to the American military every year for several decades, can be averaged out at a significantly lower cost.

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