The U.S. government has used emergency powers to sell $106.5 million worth of tank shells to Israel, skipping the usual congressional review to deliver the aid immediately, the Pentagon said on Dec. 9.
The emergency measure, used by President Joe Biden's administration to bypass Congress, comes amid more reports that the U.S. could be running out of funds to help Ukraine.
The $106.5 million sale is part of a bigger aid package for Israel, which is worth $500 million and includes 45,000 shells for Israel's Merkava tanks.
"Israel will use the enhanced capability as a deterrent to regional threats and to strengthen its homeland defense," the Pentagon said.
The U.S. has moved quickly to help Israel in contrast to the slow decision-making pace for Ukraine's military aid. The White House has warned that the funds to assist Ukraine will be exhausted in the coming weeks unless Congress takes prompt action.
On Dec. 6, Republicans in the U.S. Senate blocked a funding bill that included aid for Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan.
Republicans argued that the foreign aid legislation must be paired with significant domestic border security reforms, and they did not deem the current bill satisfactory. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer offered Senate Republicans the opportunity to propose an amendment to the bill, but no action has been taken yet.
In a blunt statement, President Volodymyr Zelensky said in early November that the delivery of artillery shells to Ukraine from Western allies had decreased since the beginning of the Israel-Hamas war.
In particular, supplies of the much-needed 155mm artillery shells have "really slowed down," he said.
So far, the U.S. has provided roughly $44 billion in military aid to Ukraine since the beginning of the full-scale war.