(NewsNation) — When Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy visited the White House, the US announced it would send an additional $1.8 billion in a military assistance package.
Here’s a look at what the Pentagon will send to help the Ukrainians as they continue to push back Russian troops in a protracted conflict that began in February.
Patriot air defense system
Zelenskyy has been calling for a Patriot system for months, as Russian bombers have launched repeated attacks on Ukrainian cities. The Patriot is a surface-to-air guided missile system that can be used to defend against aircraft, cruise missiles, and shorter-range ballistic missiles.
A Patriot battery includes a truck-mounted launch system with eight launchers that can house up to four missile interceptors each, ground-based radar, control station, and generator.
Financing for Satellite Communications Terminals and Services
The money from the satellite would act as a hedge against the possibility of Elon Musk threatening to stop funding them again. Musk shipped the first Starlink terminals to Ukraine just days after Russia invaded in February, and as of October there were more than 2,200 of the low-orbit satellites providing broadband internet to Ukraine.
In October, he asked the Pentagon to take over the costs of operating Starlink in Ukraine, tweeting that it was costing SpaceX $20 million a month to meet the country’s communications needs.
The package includes 27 Cougar Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles, 120 High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicles (HMMWVs) and six armored utility trucks. MRAP
s allow Ukrainian troops to move through heavily mined areas, while HMMWV and armored trucks will help move equipment and troops across the country.
Body armor and field gear, secure tactical communications system, and night vision devices and optics are all part of the package to equip combatants. Ukrainian military and civilian volunteers have often relied on makeshift gear and equipment of what is available.
30 mortar systems
The aid package includes multiple mortar systems in different sizes, which are used in hand to hand combat, to provide indirect fire and suppress enemy troops.
The aid package includes additional ammunition for High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS), which Ukraine has used to target Russian supply lines, high-velocity anti-radiation missiles (HARM), GRAD rockets. It also includes precision guided artillery rounds and aerial munitions, which are used to engage more specific targets and reduce collateral damage.
Small arms and ammunition
The aid package includes artillery rounds, Claymore antipersonnel ammunition, grenade launchers and small arms. While Russia has bombarded Ukraine with missile attacks, the country has also faced close combat in urban areas.
Funds for Training and Maintenance
The Department of Defense has committed funds to continue training Ukrainian troops in the weapons systems issued to them, as well as their maintenance. Officials say it could take months to train Ukrainians on the Patriot system alone.
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