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Ukraine's ambitious US weapons wish list includes F-18 Hornet fighter jets, Apache helicopters, and giant transport planes

Ukraine's ambitious US weapons wish list includes F-18 Hornet fighter jets, Apache helicopters, and giant transport planes
  • Ukraine presented a wish list of weapons to US officials in a closed-door meeting.

  • The list included high-ticket items like large transport jets, as well as fighter jets and air defense systems.

  • Senate Republicans have blocked a Ukraine aid bill in a dispute over immigration.

Despite a Ukraine aid crisis unfolding in the Senate, Ukraine still has high hopes for receiving key Western weapons to carry on the fight against Russia.

On Wednesday, Ukrainian defense officials presented a wish list of weapons needed by the military in a closed-door meeting in Washington with US government officials and defense industry executives, according to Reuters.

The list included more supplies of items they already had, such as Abrams tanks and artillery, as well as a few surprising big-ticket such as big jets.

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The US has not committed to providing all of the weapons that Ukraine has requested, but the Biden administration has said it is committed to providing Ukraine with the necessary military assistance to defend itself.

Here is a list of some of Ukraine's desired armaments, according to documents seen by Reuters.

C-17 Globemaster transport jets

A U.S. Air Force C-17 Globemaster III.
A U.S. Air Force C-17 Globemaster III.Chris Helgren/Reuters

One of Ukraine's more ambitious asks is the Boeing-made C-17 Globemaster transport jets.

The Globemaster is a workhorse transport and cargo plane of the US Air Force. As many as 102 troops can be flown on the aircraft. It also often performs tactical airlift and airdrop missions and can be used for medical evacuations.

It's 174 feet long and has a wingspan of nearly 170 feet.

C-130 Super Hercules

C-130 Hercules (L) and C-130J Super Hercules (R) planes.
C-130 Hercules (L) and C-130J Super Hercules (R) planes.Amir Cohen/Reuters

Another big-ticket item on Ukraine's list is the C-130 Super Hercules.

Its maker, Lockheed Martin. describes it as "the most advanced C-130 ever designed, built, flown and maintained."

This four-engine turboprop military transport aircraft is made for airlift missions and excels at airdropping troops and essential equipment into challenging, often hostile, environments.

It generally has a length of about 100 feet and a wingspan of approximately 130 feet.

Apache attack helicopters

Two helicopters in flight.
US Army AH-64 Apache helicopters in a Polish Army Day parade in Warsaw on August 15, 2023Wojtek Radwanski/AFP/Getty Images

Boeing describes its AH-64 Apache as "the world's most advanced and proven attack helicopter."

It has dominant multi-role attack capabilities and is useful for precision strikes, air support to ground troops, and reconnaissance, among other things.

Black Hawk helicopters

Two Army UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters prepare for landing at Forward Operating Base Kalagush, Sept. 7, 2008.
Two Army UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters prepare for landing at Forward Operating Base Kalagush, Sept. 7, 2008.US Military photo by Staff Sgt. Samuel Morse

The Black Hawk helicopter, made by Lockheed Martin's Sikorsky unit, is a versatile and widely used military helicopter.

It is used to transport troops and supplies, combat support and medical evacuations, among other things.

Drones

ukraine drone
A Ukrainian serviceman launches a drone during a press tour in the Zhytomyr Region, northern Ukraine on September 20, 2023. Kirill Chubotin / Ukrinform/Future Publishing via Getty Images

On Ukraine's wish list were also three types of drones made by General Atomics, including the patrol and reconnaissance MQ-9B Sky Guardian that can fly for or up to 40 hours in all types of weather.

Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD)

A US Army Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) weapon.
A US Army Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) weapon.US Army/Capt. Adan Cazarez/Handout via Reuters

Ukraine has also asked for Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) made by Lockheed Martin.

The powerful American missile defense system is designed to shoot down ballistic missiles.

F-18 Hornet fighter jets

Two Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) CF-18 Hornet aircraft
Two Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) CF-18 Hornet aircraft.Dave Sandford/NHLI via Getty Images

TThe F-18 Hornet fighter jets are versatile and multirole fighter jets initially developed by McDonnell Douglas and later acquired by Boeing.

They are used for various missions, including air superiority, ground attack, and reconnaissance.

These jets are more advanced and expensive than F-16s.

F-16s

F-16
F-16US Air Force

Unsurprisingly, the list included F-16 jets, long sought after by Ukraine.

In August, the US approved the transfer of F-16s from Denmark and the Netherlands, but this is yet to happen, partly due to the need for pilot training.

ATACMS missiles

ATACMS Army Tactical Missile System
ATACMS Army Tactical Missile SystemUS Army/Wikipedia Commons/Public Domain

Ukraine finally got its hands on high-profile MGM-140 Army Tactical Missile Systems, commonly known as ATACMS, from the US earlier this year, and now it wants more.

They have proved effective on the battlefield in striking Russian helicopters and S-400 missile systems, per reports.

Abrams tanks

XM-1 Abrams tanks
The XM-1 Abrams tank, which would replace the M60 series tanks, on a test range at Fort Knox in Kentucky in 1979.US Defense Department/Eddie McCrossan

Ukraine also asked for more Abrams tanks, which were first sent by the US in September.

The US sent 31 advanced M1A2 Abrams tanks to Ukraine in September — but they've been notably absent from the fighting.

Analysts told Business Insider that this is probably because it's hard to put them to good use, citing the worsening weather and Russia's hardcore defensive lines.

Ukrainian forces would be "waiting for the right moment," probably spring, when a new offensive could be launched, Mark Cancian, a retired US Marine Corps colonel a senior advisor with the Center for Strategic and International Studies, told Business Insider last month.

155 millimeter artillery

A Ukrainian soldier prepares 155mm artillery shells in his fighting position as Ukrainian Army conduct operation to target trenches of Russian forces through the Donetsk Oblast amid Russia and Ukraine war in Donetsk Oblast, Ukraine on August 6, 2023.
A Ukrainian soldier prepares 155mm artillery shells in his fighting position as Ukrainian Army conduct operation to target trenches of Russian forces through the Donetsk Oblast amid Russia and Ukraine war in Donetsk Oblast, Ukraine on August 6, 2023.Diego Herrera Carcedo/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Ukraine has also asked for more 155 millimeter artillery, which has been essential in fighting Russian forces, though fears a growing that a shell-famine could silence Ukraine's guns.

The US and NATO allies have struggled to keep up with Ukraine's demands for artillery shells and ammunition, with Western ammunition stockpiles depleting.

Ukrainian forces have been burning through artillery shells and ammunition at a rate of about 7,000 rounds a day, according to figures from Estonia's defense ministry.

Read the original article on Business Insider