Pentagon: Ukraine will not be able to use F-16 fighters before spring

Pentagon: Ukraine will not be able to use F-16 fighters before spring

US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin announced that Ukraine will not begin using American F-16 fighters before the spring of next year.

“It will take months to achieve basic combat readiness,” Austin said at a press conference in Brussels. “We will be able to see basic combat readiness next spring as soon as possible.”

Belgium decides to send decommissioned F-16 fighters to Ukraine

He pointed out that the United States, along with a number of European countries, has begun retraining Ukrainian pilots and technicians on F-16 fighters.

Deputy Pentagon spokeswoman Sabrina Singh announced that the United States has begun specialized language training for Ukrainian pilots, who will later be trained to fly American F-16 fighters.

According to what Pentagon spokesman Patrick Ryder announced at the end of last August, training of Ukrainian military personnel to fly F-16 fighters will begin at a base in Arizona in October.

Meanwhile, Assistant Secretary of Defense for Strategic Affairs, Planning and Capabilities,  Mara Karlin , clarified in early August that the F-16s would not be transferred for Kiev until after Ukrainian forces prepared to use them.

Politico: The US Congress may not agree to provide unified aid to Israel and Ukraine

Politico newspaper reported that members of the House of Representatives doubt that there are enough lawmakers in the US Congress to support military aid to both Ukraine and Israel as part of a possible request from the Washington administration.
The newspaper indicated that members of Congress are ready to send money to Israel, but aid to Ukraine still causes disagreements within their ranks.

US President Joe Biden has not yet submitted a formal request to Congress for additional funds for Israel, but he said on Tuesday that such a request would be submitted soon. Meanwhile, a separate request for $24 billion in military aid to Ukraine, which the White House sent to lawmakers last August, was not approved.

She stressed that military aid to Israel is likely to receive quick approval from members of both parties. Some Ukraine supporters are skeptical about agreeing to send money to the two countries as part of a joint request.

The issue of additional aid to Kiev raises controversy among Republicans in the House of Representatives, who believe that the US administration does not adequately supervise the weapons sent, and has not yet established its goals or strategy in this regard.

NBC previously reported that the White House may send a joint request to Congress for additional funding to provide military assistance to Israel, Ukraine and Taiwan.
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