The US has allowed the Ukrainians to run out of ammo and just about everything else.
And they allowed this to happen because, as Andrey Martyanov keeps reminding us, US so-called “experts” and top generals don’t know what real war is.
The leaked Pentagon document trove has generally been assessed as authentic. See independent report.
Out of Ammo
One sad fact for Ukraine is that, according to the leaked report, Ukraine is down to only 9,788 artillery shells on hand, or enough to sustain combat for a few days.
The report claims only 1,104 shells were expended in the previous 24 hour period – compared to at least 20,000 for Russia. Josep Borrell (Time Magazine) claims Russia is burning through 50,000 shells a day, but that is probably an exaggeration based on the maximum burn rate.
“The most important, pressing issue today for the Ukrainian army is to have a continuous flow of ammunition,” E.U. foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said last month. “If we fail on that, really, the result of the war is in danger.”
Borrell said Russian forces fired about 50,000 rounds of artillery each day, compared to about 6,000-7,000 from Ukraine—and that the gap should be closed.
Initially, the US supplied one million 155 ml shells and the EU sent 350,000. Together, these could reasonably have been expected to last 300 days or so but they’re almost gone.
The US, the only viable source, produces 14,000 shells a month (enough for 2 days of combat), but US officials hope to raise this to 20,000 a month sometime this year. Great. That would give Ukraine enough for 2-3 days of combat.
According to Time, the EU is close to a $2.12 Billion deal to restock ammo in Ukraine but the number of shells and the delivery schedule are not mentioned.
“The E.U. appears to be closing in on a €2 billion ($2.12 billion) deal to restock ammunition supplies for Ukraine and also refill countries’ stocks, POLITICO reported. Half will be dedicated to partly reimburse countries that are already in a position to donate ammunition from their stockpiles. The other half will be designated for countries to jointly purchase new ammunition to buy at scale, allowing for cheaper overall costs.”
The situation with ordnance for the air defense systems is equally dire. The S-300 is made in Russia so when the last of these interceptors are gone, that’s all she wrote.
New air defenses from the US are not well stocked with interceptors and, though a Ukrainian commentator I have read seems to think the Patriot systems are the answer to their prayers, he doesn’t seem to realize that no air defense system in the world can intercept the kind of hypersonic missiles landing all around Ukraine every day since October 10 (I’ve been chronicling these strikes. No day was missed so far).
As for the rest of the equipment, according to Big Serge substack, the US-NATO power build is way short of the amount needed to match the Russians.
A long time ago, before the start of the Russian special military operation on February 24, 2022, I had read in a Russian commentary that a US land offensive in Europe would be an uphill battle in part because of the difficulty in bringing the troops and materiel to the battlefield, because the Russian side has its equipment – and lots of it – on site and has no shipping problem at all. Oh, and Russia manufactures shells and other expendables at several times the rate of the US.
Sure enough. This is what happens when a war is planned by ignorant politicians.
One theory I have about the leak is that it may be the Pentagon’s way of telling Zelensky to stop the war and cut a deal with Russia.