The United States has spent over $260 million on non-lethal military equipment for Ukrainians against Russian separatists on the front lines... and it's all falling apart.
The Washington Post reports (emphasis added):
On the outskirts of the separatist-controlled city of Donetsk, for example, one Ukrainian special forces unit is using U.S.-supplied Humvees dating from the late 1980s and early 1990s, based on serial numbers on the vehicles.
Three of the Humvees had plastic doors and windows — barely any protection at all. The tires on one of the trucks blew apart after driving only a few hundred kilometers, the result of sitting in a warehouse too long, said one mechanic.
Another infantry unit of approximately 120 men received from the Pentagon a single bulletproof vest — a type that U.S. troops stopped using in combat during the mid-2000s.
“If the Americans are going to send us equipment, don’t send us secondhand stuff,” said one Ukrainian special forces commander, who like other soldiers spoke on condition of anonymity to criticize the condition of his unit’s gear.
"If the Americans are going to send us equipment, don’t send us secondhand stuff."
Ukranian Special Forces Commander
As a result, there is "distrust and lowered morale among Ukrainian troops" and many are calling into question the U.S. government’s "commitment."
The Defense Department's excuse: They were in a rush...
“We wanted to get things there as fast as possible, and we had no money appropriated for this crisis,” said the official, who requested anonymity to discuss sensitive policy issues. “Does that means everything was perfect? Of course not.”
President Barack Obama has a terrible record when it comes to arming and training allies. The Daily Wire reported in September that there were only 5 anti-ISIS fighters left from a $500 million training program.
Image (via AP): "U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry attends a session on Ukraine at the NATO ministerial meetings at NATO Headquarters in Brussels, Wednesday Dec. 2, 2015."