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Senators propose $500 million for assistance to Ukraine, including lethal military equipment.
Lethal military aid to Ukraine. Finally. FGM-148 Javelin are sorely needed, a ton of them, quickly, to blunt the buildup of three Russian “Armies” outside Ukraine.
U.S. Senate Committee on Armed Services okays military budget, includes aid to Ukraine
The United States Senate Committee on Armed Services has approved the draft military expenditures for FY 2018, including some $700 billion for defense, U.S. media have reported.
The budget allotment provides $621.5 billion for defense expenditures, plus $75 billion for military operations overseas. However, media report that $10 billion of the $75 billion will be earmarked for military programs in the U.S.
According to the Washington Post newspaper, senators propose $500 million for assistance to Ukraine, including lethal military equipment. The draft budget limits direct cooperation with Russian military forces, a measure adopted following Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea in March 2014.
The newspaper notes $4.6 billion for activities strengthening defense capabilities in Eastern Europe, including about $100 million for financing programs to help the Baltics shore up its defense against Russian aggression.
“The committee believes the United States must do more to deter Russian aggression, whether across its borders or in cyberspace,” the summary of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2018 says.
The article also says the committee authorized a development program on new ground-launched intermediate-range missiles.
Senators on the committee also believe it is necessary to prevent the Pentagon from using products of Kaspersky Lab on its computers, fearing links between the company and Russian officials.
“The committee markup prohibits the DOD from using software platforms developed by Kaspersky Lab due to reports that the Moscow-based company might be vulnerable to Russian government influence,” the summary said.
The committee also calls on the Pentagon to provide information about Russia’s activities involving so-called hybrid warfare.
“The committee markup adds reporting on hybrid warfare as part of the annual report on Russian military and security developments, including assessments of Russia’s information warfare strategy and capabilities, malicious cyber activities, and coercive economic tools,” it said.