West News Wire: In light of concerns that the Pentagon is failing to accurately quantify the true value of the assistance offered by Washington to Ukraine, Senator Marco Rubio has ordered a thorough examination of the program.
In a letter made public on Monday, Rubio chastised President Joe Biden’s administration for a recent $3 billion accounting “error” in the Pentagon that led to an allegedly exaggerated estimate of the cost of the weapons transferred to Ukraine.
The Florida senator asserts that this may not be the case because the Pentagon “appears to be using the depreciated value of the equipment” at the moment.
Rubio has asked the Government Accountability Office to do a thorough examination of all the equipment given to Ukraine since the start of the conflict with Russia in order to fix the problem.
“This will ensure US taxpayers are not footing an even larger bill to replace the equipment needed to defend the US and its interests,” the senator stated.
Reuters first the story of the $3 billion accounting blunder last month. Later, the Pentagon acknowledged it, stating that US authorities had assessed Ukraine-bound equipment using the cost of totally replacing the goods rather than the products’ market worth.
Reps. Michael McCaul and Mike Rogers stated that the monies “could have been used for extra supplies and weapons for the upcoming [Ukrainian] counteroffensive]” instead of being dispersed over the rest of the year in response to the disclosures.
The White House has made an effort to contain the damage, with National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan adamant that it was “not a waste of that $3 billion,” but a count of how much military equipment the US had provided to Ukraine.
It turns out that we have an extra $3 billion to spend to give Ukraine more weaponry after you make that adjustment [from replacement to actual costs], according to Sullivan.
Washington has set aside more than $100 billion for Ukraine-related expenses since the crisis began, including over $40 billion for military aid. Republicans have demanded an audit even though US officials maintain that aid is being appropriately overseen. One of the key proponents of a review, Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene, claimed that Americans “have no idea where all this money is going.”