Ukraine used 3% of US defense budget to destroy half of Russian army — Lindsey Graham

Lindsey Graham

Having spent less than 3% of annual U.S. military budget in security assistance, Ukraine managed to cut Russia’s combat capacity in half, U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) said at a press conference in Kyiv on Aug. 23.

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Earlier on that day, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy met with three U.S. senators visiting Kyiv — Richard Blumenthal, Lindsey Graham, and Elizabeth Warren.

According to Zelenskyy, the discussion focused on improving Ukraine's defense capabilities.

"Discussed the situation at the front and the urgent issue of further strengthening Ukraine’s defense capability," the president said in a Facebook post.

At the press conference, Graham highlighted that the United States had spent less than 3% of its annual military budget to aid Ukraine in its war against Russia. He noted that the Ukrainian Defense Forces "have destroyed half of the Russian army."

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"This is the best investment for American security ever; Ukraine is a fantastic partner — we have not seen such a partner since Churchill," the senator said.

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Additionally, he pointed out that U.S. intelligence had made an error ahead of Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine, greatly overestimating the strength of the Russian army.

“When the Russian invasion began, we were told that Kyiv would fall in four days, and the country — in three weeks,” Graham adds.

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“This was the biggest misunderstanding of Ukrainians and overestimation of the Russian army by our intelligence. I myself thought the Russian army was better than it is.”

The Washington Post reported that the total amount of aid provided by Washington to Ukraine now exceeds $66 billion.

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