September 30, 2022 Russia-Ukraine News

The Pentagon is working to form a new command to coordinate Ukraine’s arming and training, two US officials say, in a bid to streamline what was a largely ad hoc process quickly created in the wake of the invasion Russian.

The new command, which will be based in Weisbaden, Germany, will report to Gen. Christopher Cavoli, the commander of U.S. European Command, who led the multinational effort to train Ukrainian military forces on advanced Western weapons and deliver those weapons. at the border with Ukraine, an official said. It should be led by a 3 star general.

But the United States has been cautious in how it discusses the plan, which officials say does not constitute a major change to the current system of organizing and administering expeditions. Officials are careful not to give Putin a reason to claim the United States is a party to the conflict, especially given the Kremlin’s lofty rhetoric about the threat of using nuclear weapons.

The New York Times was the first to report on the new command.

The Biden administration has openly signaled its continued, long-term support for Ukraine. Since the Russian invasion began in late February, the United States has committed more than $16 billion in security assistance to Ukraine. This week, the Pentagon announced another $1.1 billion in additional military aid to Ukraine, which a senior defense official called a “multi-year investment” in the country’s defenses.

Since the first weeks of the war, the United States has sought ways to quickly and efficiently translate Ukrainian requests for different types of equipment into arms deliveries, turning a process that normally takes weeks or more into days.

As Ukrainian forces proved they could withstand the Russian invasion and Russian President Vladimir Putin’s hopes of a quick victory turned into a deadly war, the number of countries willing to provide security assistance to Ukraine has increased.

The United States and its allies and partners created the Ukraine Contact Group, made up of more than 40 countries that meet monthly, to coordinate shipments of arms and equipment to Ukraine.

The new command will create a more formal structure within the military to manage the shipments, officials said. Its planned location in central Germany also puts it close to many areas used by Western countries to train Ukrainian forces.

The command would also work closely with the International Donor Coordination Center, which has been instrumental in managing the logistics necessary to match the need for Ukrainian weapons with the available stockpiles of potential donor nations.

Christi C. Elwood