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Because the war in Ukraine grinds towards its third 12 months, America has offered greater than $70 billion in help, with billions going not simply towards the army, but in addition to assist farmers, subsidize small companies and pay the nation’s first responders.

The U.S. has performed a important position in bankrolling Ukraine’s battle for survival since Russia invaded on Feb. 24, 2022. Whereas Ukrainians battle for his or her lives, a battle is brewing in Washington over the Biden administration’s request for greater than $20 billion extra in Ukraine help. Some Republicans in Congress are opposed; hardliners within the Home wish to lower off all funding whereas others are demanding extra oversight.

How a lot help has the U.S. despatched to Ukraine?

The united stateshas spent simply over $43 billion on army help to Ukraine since Russia invaded — that is equal to about 5% of the American protection price range. European international locations mixed have contributed round $30 billion.

The U.S. has additionally despatched military equipment, together with 186 Bradley combating automobiles, that are value round $2 million every.

Lieutenant Oleksandr Shyrshyn shows Holly Williams a Bradley fighting vehicle. / Credit: 60 Minutes

Lieutenant Oleksandr Shyrshyn reveals Holly Williams a Bradley combating car. / Credit score: 60 Minutes

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American taxpayers are offering extra than simply weapons. The U.S. has pumped almost $25 billion of non-military help into Ukraine’s economic system because the invasion started.

How are U.S. tax {dollars} being spent in Ukraine?

The majority of America’s contribution to Ukraine has gone towards army help. American rocket launchers are actually reaching deep into Russian-occupied components of Ukraine. The Patriot air protection system is shielding tens of millions of Ukrainian civilians from airstrikes.

Earlier in September, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken made his fourth journey to Ukraine since Russia invaded. He stood subsequent to Ukrainian Overseas Minister Dmytro Kuleba at a press convention and burdened that the U.S. would continue to aid Ukraine.

“America is dedicated to empowering Ukraine to put in writing its personal future,” Blinken mentioned at a press convention whereas in Ukraine. “Within the crucible of President Putin’s brutal and ongoing struggle, the US and Ukraine have solid a partnership that’s stronger than ever and rising day by day.”

Lieutenant Common Ben Hodges, who served because the commander of the U.S. Military in Europe till 2017, mentioned the help has been essential to Ukraine’s survival.

“With out that type of help, I believe Ukraine would’ve been most likely overrun, defeated, definitely would’ve misplaced much more,” Hodges mentioned.

The struggle has additionally impacted Ukraine’s monetary standing, with the nation’s economy contracting by an estimated 31% final 12 months, in keeping with the US Company for Worldwide Improvement.

The U.S. authorities is subsidizing small companies in Ukraine, together with Tatiana Abramova’s knitwear firm, to maintain them afloat.

Tatiana Abramova has a knitwear company in Ukraine. / Credit: 60 Minutes

Tatiana Abramova has a knitwear firm in Ukraine. / Credit score: 60 Minutes

American officers from USAID helped Abramova discover new prospects abroad. Within the midst of struggle, her firm is supporting over 70 households.

“Particularly within the situation of struggle, we have now to work,” she mentioned. “We have now to pay taxes, we have now to pay wage, wage to our staff. We have now to work, do not cease.”

The U.S. authorities has additionally purchased seeds and fertilizer for Ukrainian farmers. America is protecting the salaries of Ukraine’s first responders, all 57,000 of them. The U.S. funds divers who clear unexploded ammunition from the nation’s rivers to make them secure once more for swimming and fishing.

Holding monitor of U.S. help to Ukraine

Among the considerations over help to Ukraine boil all the way down to oversight. Ukraine is a younger democracy with a historical past of corruption. In accordance with the monitoring group Transparency Worldwide, it is ranked the second most corrupt nation in Europe. Solely Russia scores decrease.

A report from the Pentagon’s Inspector Common final 12 months discovered the U.S. authorities was unable to watch weapons transfers within the early months of the struggle, partially as a result of the American embassy’s employees was evacuated. Legal teams in Ukraine stole some weapons and tools from the nation’s army, although they have been later recovered by Ukrainian intelligence companies.

Oleksandra Ustinova, a former anti-corruption activist who’s now an outspoken member of Ukraine’s parliament, claims that programs are actually in place to ensure that by no means occurs once more. She chairs a authorities fee that tracks all army help coming to Ukraine.

“We have now on-line databases with the serial numbers of each American piece of weapon that your embassy has entry to,” Ustinova mentioned. “They will come, sort in, for example, a Javelin [missile] or a HIMARS and see wherein brigade it’s, after which go test it if they do not imagine.”

It is a prime precedence for Ukraine.

“We’re not silly to shoot ourselves within the leg,” Ustinova mentioned. “We perceive we’d by no means [have] made it with out the US, and we’re not gonna make it with out the US.”

Posters have been shared round Ukraine earlier this 12 months that includes an American hotline for Ukrainians to report misuse of help from U.S. help. American officers are actually investigating 4 legal instances involving non-military help, and 170 Ukrainian authorities officers — together with high-ranking army officers — have been charged in corruption instances to date this 12 months, for crimes like embezzlement and accepting bribes.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren was just lately in Kyiv, together with Sen. Richard Blumenthal and Sen. Lindsey Graham, to watch the scenario.

“We have now to trust that the {dollars} we’re spending are literally being spent in protection of the nation,” Warren mentioned. “All of that’s essential. However that is why we’re right here.”

Holly Williams in Ukraine along with Sen. Lindsey Graham, Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Sen. Richard Blumenthal. / Credit: 60 Minutes

Holly Williams in Ukraine together with Sen. Lindsey Graham, Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Sen. Richard Blumenthal. / Credit score: 60 Minutes

The senators, and different U.S. officers, informed 60 Minutes there have been no substantiated instances of American weapons being diverted.

“We’re monitoring. We’re following every bit of apparatus,” Blumenthal mentioned. “There was no diversion. No proof of misappropriation. That is an American success story on aiding a companion combating for freedom.”

Can America afford the help to Ukraine?

Individuals face their very own monetary challenges and plenty of query if the nation ought to be sending a lot cash abroad. Sen. Graham feels it is among the greatest cash the U.S. has ever spent.

“This is what we have gotten for our funding. We’ve not misplaced one soldier. We decreased the fight energy of the Russian military by 50%, and never certainly one of us has died in that endeavor,” Graham mentioned. “It is a nice deal for America.”

The end result of the struggle could also be determined by America’s willingness to maintain paying. Lieutenant Oleksandr Shyrshyn, a father of two who enlisted on the day Russia invaded Ukraine, pointed to the associated fee for Ukrainians.

“Ukrainians pay with their lives,” he mentioned. “And I imagine and I hope that their lives price far more than cash, far more than taxpayers’ cash.”

This story was reported by Holly Williams, Erin Lyall and Eliza Costas.

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By Maggi

"Greetings! I am a media graduate with a diverse background in the news industry. From working as a reporter to producing content, I have a well-rounded understanding of the field and a drive to stay at the forefront of the industry." When I'm not writing content, I'm Playing and enjoying with my Kids.

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