During a joint press conference with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in Washington DC, US President Joe Biden affirmed that the United States would continue providing Ukraine with vital weapons and equipment “as long as we can” but warned that the US capacity to assist is nearing its limit without further funding from Congress.
“Without supplemental funding, we’re rapidly coming to an end of our ability to help Ukraine respond to the urgent operational demands that it has,” Biden stated.
Biden emphasized that Russian President Vladimir Putin is “banking on the United States failing to deliver for Ukraine,” adding, “We must, we must, we must prove him wrong.”
Zelenskyy’s visit came as he aimed to bolster backing for Ukraine in the US, with Biden’s request for $61 billion in new funding for Ukraine stuck in Congress amid some Republican opposition.
Although Biden announced a new $200 million military aid package for Ukraine, it is one of the last that the Biden administration can provide using residual funds. Without Congressional approval, further aid will be indefinitely on hold.
White House Speaker Mike Johnson stated that the chances of reaching a deal on additional Ukraine funding are virtually nil without a “transformative change” in border enforcement from Biden. He also emphasized the need for “clarity” on the US’s role in Ukraine and ‘proper oversight’ of the spending of US aid.
While there have been promises to support Ukraine ‘as long as it takes,’ the ongoing provision of military aid is uncertain, even after President Zelenskyy’s “inspirational and determined” private meeting with the Senate, as characterized by Republican Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.
The US-based Institute for the Study of War reports that Russian forces aim to regain the initiative even under challenging weather conditions before Russia’s 2024 elections. Reportedly, they focus on capturing Avdiivka in Donetsk Oblast and recapturing Kupiansk in Kharkiv Oblast, which Ukrainian forces liberated during the Kharkiv offensive in September 2022.
Although Ukraine plans to scale up its weapons production domestically, currently focusing on drones, but remains reliant on Western allies for tanks, armored vehicles, and shells. These resources are rapidly depleting due to the high frequency of combat, with an average of 70 clashes on the frontline each day.