US Initially Provided Ukraine Only With Portable Weapons Expecting Quick Defeat, Reports Say
© Mikhail PalinchakTesting of American Javelin anti-tank missile systems at a military range in Ukraine. Press Service of the President of Ukraine.
© Mikhail Palinchak
MOSCOW (Sputnik) - The United States allotted only portable weapons in aid for Ukraine in the first phase of hostilities rather than heavy artillery and ammunition as it expected Russia to take over quickly, The Washington Post reported on Wednesday, citing a senior US defense official.
Portable weapons, such as air-defense systems Stinger and anti-tank systems Javelin, were expected to serve as instruments of underground resistance, the newspaper said.
Ukraine ran out of artillery ammunition almost completely for a few days in mid-March, but their fight beyond expectations "caused a scramble" in Washington and prompted a boost in arms supplies, according to the report.
Russia launched a special military operation in Ukraine on February 24 in response to calls by the Donetsk and Lugansk People's Republics for protection from Ukrainian troops. The Russian Defense Ministry said the goal of the operation, which targets Ukrainian military infrastructure, is to "demilitarize and denazify" Ukraine, and to completely liberate Donbas.
In April, Russia sent a diplomatic note to all countries on the issue of arms supplies to Ukraine. Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov noted that any cargo containing weapons for Ukraine will become a legitimate target for Russia.