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The White House has issued a blunt warning that the US will run out of funds to aid Ukraine by the end of the year, saying Russian battlefield gains were more likely unless Congress approved new money for Kyiv.
The alert from Shalanda Young, the White House budget director, in a letter to congressional leaders on Monday, represented the most specific assessment yet of Washington’s waning financial and military support for Ukraine.
“Without congressional action, by the end of the year we will run out of resources to procure more weapons and equipment for Ukraine and to provide equipment from US military stocks,” Young wrote to political leaders of both parties.
“There is no magical pot of funding available to meet this moment. We are out of money — and nearly out of time,” she said.
President Joe Biden’s request for $106bn in emergency funding for his biggest foreign policy priorities, including Ukraine, Israel, and the Indo-Pacific, remains mired in stalemate on Capitol Hill, driven by mounting Republican opposition to helping Kyiv.
Some lawmakers — especially in the Senate, where backing for Ukraine runs deeper — are trying to negotiate a bipartisan deal that would contain aid for Kyiv alongside new immigration and asylum procedures to reduce the number of undocumented people arriving in the US through its southern border.
Even if an agreement is reached in the Senate, however, it is unclear if it can pass the Republican-led House, whose new speaker Mike Johnson has been sceptical of funding for Ukraine.
“Cutting off the flow of US weapons and equipment will kneecap Ukraine on the battlefield, not only putting at risk the gains Ukraine has made, but increasing the likelihood of Russian military victories,” Young wrote to Congress.
“Already, our packages of security assistance have become smaller and the deliveries of aid have become more limited . . . while our allies around the world have stepped up to do more, US support is critical and cannot be replicated by others,” she added.
The White House warning comes as EU member states are struggling to reach a budget deal in Brussels that would send €50bn to Ukraine, people close to the discussions told the Financial Times.
Young said Ukraine also needed economic support, which is in danger of stalling.
“If Ukraine’s economy collapses, they will not be able to keep fighting, full stop,” she wrote. “Putin understands this well, which is why Russia has made destroying Ukraine’s economy central to its strategy — which you can see in its attacks against Ukraine’s grain exports and energy infrastructure,” she added.
Young also said money for Ukraine would bring benefits to the US economy. Since the start of Russia’s full invasion in February 2022, Washington has approved $111bn in aid to Kyiv.
“While we cannot predict exactly which US companies will be awarded new contracts, we do know the funding will be used to acquire advanced capabilities to defend against attacks on civilians in Israel and Ukraine — for example, air defense systems built in Alabama, Texas, and Georgia and vital subcomponents sourced from nearly all 50 states,” she said.