The strain on weapons stockpiles – and the ability of the US industrial base to keep up with demand – is one of the key challenges facing the Biden administration as the US continues to send billions of dollars of weapons to Ukraine to support its fight against Russia. One of the officials said the stockpiles of certain systems are "dwindling” after nearly nine months of sending supplies to Kyiv during the high-intensity war, as there’s "finite amount” of excess stocks which the US has available to send.
Among the weapons systems where there’s particular concern about US stockpiles meeting Ukrainian demands are 155mm artillery ammunition and Stinger anti-aircraft shoulder-fired missiles, the sources said.
Some sources also raised concerns about US production of additional weapons systems, including HARMs anti-radiation missiles, GMLRS surface-to-surface missiles and the portable Javelin anti-tank missiles – although the US has moved to ramp up production for those and other systems.
One reason for the concern about low stockpiles is that the US industrial base is having difficulty keeping up with demand quickly enough, the sources said. In addition, European allies cannot sufficiently backfill Ukrainian military requests due to their need to maintain to their own forces’ supplies.
"It’s getting harder and harder,” Rep. Mike Quigley, a member of the House Intelligence Committee, told CNN. "This is a war we thought would be over in days but now could be years. At a time when global supply chains are melting down, the West is going to have a very difficult time to meet demands at this very high level.”
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