According to a recently released report from the Inspector General titled Evaluation of the DoD’s Enhanced End‑Use Monitoring of Defense Articles Provided to Ukraine, the Department of Defense failed to properly track more than $1 billion dollars in aid to Ukraine.
40,000 weapons, including shoulder-fired missiles, kamikaze drones, and night-vision devices that were intended to be sent to Ukraine —poof, gone and the U.S. doesn’t know where.
“The DoD did not fully comply with enhanced end‑use monitoring (EEUM) the program requirements for defense article accountability in a hostile environment,” the report said.
“Cooperation-Ukraine (ODC‑Ukraine) personnel have not been able to conduct initial inventories on all EEUM‑designated defense articles within 90 days of arrival.”
“There’s not a record of the inventories being done,” Robert P. Storch, the Pentagon’s inspector general, said in an interview on Thursday.
“It doesn’t mean they’re not there, or they’re not being used,” he said of the high-risk equipment. But “because of their sensitivity, their vulnerability to diversion, or misuse, or the consequences of that, it’s particularly important to have this additional tracking and accountability in place,” Mr. Storch said.
The IG report does not go into whether the weapons were stolen or smuggled as that “was beyond the scope of our evaluation to determine,” the IG wrote.
“It was beyond the scope of our evaluation to determine whether there has been diversion of such assistance,” the report said. “The DoD OIG now has personnel stationed in Ukraine, and the DoD OIG’s Defense Criminal Investigative Service continues to investigate allegations of criminal conduct with regard to U.S. security assistance to Ukraine.”
While the lost weapons only represent $50 billion in military equipment that the U.S. has sent Ukraine since 2014, the fact that 40,000 weapons are currently unaccounted for in such a hostile climate should be cause for concern for every American.
But National Security Council spokesman John Kirby doesn’t seem concerned at all.
“There’s no evidence of any sort of wide-scale diversion or illicit diversion of any of the material that’s been going on to Ukraine,” and given the wartime environment, “there are real limits to our ability to count every… bullet, every artillery shell,” Kirby told reporters.
“We have a small footprint at the embassy of military men and women who are working on this accountability,” Kirby added. “We don’t want to, nor should we be expected to, put them in greater harm’s way, closer to the front, to inspect every little shipment and how it’s being used. I mean, it’s a combat environment.”
Why isn’t the Biden Administration more concerned about this?