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Bloomberg: NATO to expand defense tech, intelligence sharing with Ukraine

NATO is planning to expand cooperation with Ukraine on defense technology and share more intelligence about Russia’s electronic warfare capabilities, as some of its members lift constraints on Kyiv’s ability to wage war.
Ukrainian soldiers controlling a drone. Illustrative photo. Credit: General Staff of Ukraine.
Ukrainian soldiers controlling a drone. Illustrative photo. Credit: General Staff of Ukraine.
Bloomberg: NATO to expand defense tech, intelligence sharing with Ukraine

NATO is planning to expand cooperation with Ukraine on defense technology and share more intelligence about Russia’s electronic warfare capabilities, as some of its members lift constraints on Kyiv’s ability to wage war.

As noted by Bloomberg, the conflict has pushed the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to devote more resources to cybersecurity deterrence and tracking Russia’s military tech, Assistant Secretary General David van Weel told journalists this week.

“Ukrainians are innovating at a very high speed,” he said Tuesday in Krakow, Poland. “But of course, the Russians are not stupid. That means innovation in the battlefield is not a static thing. It’s more like chess.”

Recent Russian advances have led Ukraine’s allies to loosen restrictions on weapons they provide, with the US and Germany authorizing attacks on Russian territory for the first time. Such strikes had previously been forbidden for fear of antagonizing the country with the biggest nuclear arsenal.

An agreement that introduces new frameworks for sharing information, including on supply chains for drones, will be finalized in time for the alliance’s July summit in Washington, according to van Weel.
 
One goal of the program is to help make Ukraine a large-scale tech provider once the war ends. NATO also wants to replicate some of the rapid tech adoption and deployment seen in Ukraine since the war started, van Weel said.
 
Van Weel spoke at the inaugural Defense Innovators Forum, a conference that featured representatives from Kyiv, Brussels and the Pentagon, as well as dozens of startups building battlefield equipment.
 

Ukraine’s approach to purchasing weapons

At the conference, NATO and US officials frequently pointed to the rapid tech development in Ukraine since the start of the war with envy.
 
One such example is Ukraine’s military strategy to counter Russia’s larger forces through technological advantages. As such, Ukraine is experimenting with the implementation of AI in drones.
 
Another example includes a lightweight cloak, which blocks body heat emission, rendering troops invisible to thermal imaging devices. The new cloaking technology was developed by Brave1, a Ukrainian startup connecting innovators to the country’s defense needs. 
Alex Bornyakov, Ukraine’s deputy tech minister, gave reporters in Krakow a blunt assessment of his country’s approach to purchases: “It’s very simple,” he said. “If it kills Russians, we buy it.”

According to NATO and Ukrainian officials, Russia’s tech strategy relies heavily on buying drones from Iran and components from China. Russia’s military has circumvented sanctions to buy Western tech through third-party vendors.

In addition, Russia has also developed new technologies, including ones that can evade acoustic sensors set up to locate drones.

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