Grumbling by Amereican military leaders that the Ukraine is using up US munitions and weapons faster that they can be replaced for US military stocks…
Republican lawmakers knock their own party memebers for talking about cutting military spending …
Who control’s the city of Soledar?
Does it matter?
Here’s what we know:
There have been conflicting reports for days about who controls the small eastern town of Soledar, which has taken on outsize attention as Moscow seeks a victory.
A Russian victory in Soledar would be a symbolic win but have limited strategic value, analysts say.
As Wagner leaders demand credit for Soledar victory, the rift in Moscow’s war effort widens.
The show goes on at Kyiv’s National Opera and Ballet Theater, but with some wartime changes.
A worldwide recession might be averted, the I.M.F. chief says, but the war in Ukraine is a caveat.
The Pentagon says ‘systemic problems’ in the Russian Army led to its military shake-up….
Here’s the latest on the war and its ripple effects across the globe.
- The Russian Defense Ministry announced that its forces took “complete” control of Soledar, calling it an “important” step to help Moscow’s offensive in the Donetsk region, Russia’s Tass news agency reported. Serhiy Cherevaty, a spokesman for the Ukrainian armed forces in the east, said otherwise. The “fighting continues in Soledar,” he said, but would not say how many Ukrainian troops remained or what area they held. The Washington Post could not verify the claims.
- “Our fighters are bravely trying to hold the line” under a barrage through the night, Ukrainian Deputy Defense Minister Hanna Maliar said earlier Friday. “This is a difficult phase of the war, but we will win,” she wrote on Telegram.
- Fighting has prevented the evacuation of residents still in Soledar, said Ukraine’s governor for Donetsk, Pavlo Kyrylenko. He said Thursday in televised remarks that 559 civilians remained in the town, as reported by Ukrainian media, and he described the fighting there as a “bloodbath.”
- Russian advances in Soledar would not “have a strategic impact on the war itself,” according to John Kirby, communications coordinator for the U.S. National Security Council. “It certainly isn’t going to stop the Ukrainians or slow them down in terms of their efforts to regain their territory,” he told reporters in a briefing Thursday.
- Russia’s chief ground forces commander traveled to Belarus to inspect units of a joint military force stationed there, the Belarusian state news agency saidThursday. Kyiv has warned that Russia intends to use its ally Belarus to open a new front in the war along Ukraine’s northern border.
- Russia is seeking to raise the minimum age for conscription from 18 to 21, Russian media reported, citing a senior Russian lawmaker. Russian President Vladimir Putin supports the idea, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said, according to the Tass news agency….
On military Supplies to the Ukraine vs US stocks…
If weapons makers can’t boost production in the next six to 12 months, the United States may find it “challenging” to continue arming itself and helping Ukraine, the Navy secretary said Wednesday.
Carlos Del Toro was speaking to a group of reporters on the sidelines of a Surface Navy Association conference in Arlington, Virginia, just days after the Biden administration announced it would send armored fighting vehicles to Ukraine. Some Republicans are pushing for the U.S. to stop giving weapons to Kyiv.
The secretary was asked to respond to comments made at the conference by Adm. Daryl Caudle, commander of U.S. Fleet Forces Command. Caudle, the reporter said, worried that “the Navy might get to the point where it has to make the decision whether it needs to arm itself or arm Ukraine, and has the Navy gotten to that point yet?”
Del Toro replied, “With regards to deliveries of weapons systems for the fight in Ukraine…Yeah, that’s always a concern for us. And we monitor that very, very closely. I wouldn’t say we’re quite there yet, but if the conflict does go on for another six months, for another year, it certainly continues to stress the supply chain in ways that are challenging.”…
US and Ukraine military money support….
Lawmakers are speaking out against proposals to pare 2024 federal spending to 2022 levels.
Discussions of such proposals are among the reported concessions made by Rep. Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., as he sought votes to become Speaker of the House. The 2022 federal topline was $1.5 billion, including $727.7 for the Defense Department; the recently enacted 2023 budget of $1.7 billion includes $797 billion for the Pentagon.
Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, told Fox News Sunday this week that “everything” was to be considered for spending cuts. (In 2021, Jordan tried to overturn election results.)
Rep. Chip Roy, R-Texas, responded on Twitter that the defense budget would not be touched.
Rep. Joe Courtney, D-Conn., said Wednesday that he is concerned about the budget-cutting talk, calling it a “completely unrealistic policy” and a “fool’s errand.”
More military support to the Ukraine means more jobs for Americans….
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