The US Daily New York Times reported yesterday (26th) local time that the West is suffering from the consumption of arms and ammunition as the war that began with Russia's invasion of Ukraine lasted for 10 months.

It is pointed out that not only Russia, which has already shown signs of missile exhaustion from various angles, but also Western camps such as the world's strongest military power, the United States and NATO, which support Ukraine, are experiencing difficulties in supplying military supplies in the face of unexpected wars of attrition.

The New York Times analyzed that "both sides are burning weapons and ammunition at a rate not seen since World War II."

Even at the beginning of the war, it seems that the relatively small Ukrainian army, called the 'Bonsai Army' in the West, had a spare prospect for how much firepower to use.

However, NATO personnel who watched the actual war agreed that the amount of shells used was enormous.

According to a senior NATO official, Ukrainian forces fired 6,000 to 7,000 rounds of artillery fire every day in the Russian-held Donbas region last summer, and the Russian army poured 40,000 to 50,000 rounds a day.

This is not enough to cover the monthly production of 15,000 feet in the United States.

"A day in Ukraine is more than a month in Afghanistan," said Camille Grand, a defense expert for the European Union, EU.

Limited ammunition stocks and production make it increasingly difficult for the West to fully support Ukraine.

Also, from the standpoint of the United States, it is not easy to divert power concentrated in Taiwan and South Korea as the need to contain China and North Korea remains.

In response, the West is working on a system that can replace expensive air defense missiles and portable anti-tank missiles, the Javelin.

Ukraine is looking for Soviet-made weapons such as S-300 anti-aircraft missiles and T-72 tanks that can be used by Ukraine, while re-manufacturing 152mm or 122mm shells used in the Soviet era by restarting military factories in the Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Bulgaria. Plans are being discussed.

The New York Times pointed out that the West is also trying to buy ammunition from South Korea to replenish the stock of shells being sent to Ukraine.

This seems to point to reports that the United States recently agreed to a contract to purchase 155mm shells with South Korea.

However, there are limits to supply and demand efforts due to regulations in each country that restricts trade in lethal weapons related to conflict areas.

Neutral Switzerland has banned German sales of anti-aircraft weapons to Ukraine, and Italy has a similar rule.

It's also not easy for NATO to attract future financial support from member states.

Recently, NATO has set a goal of raising defense spending to 2% of member countries' gross domestic product by 2024, but only 18% of countries in the European Union have been cooperative in spending, and most member countries are cold.

The European Peace Fund, EPF, created by the EU to support Ukraine, is already 90% depleted.

Ukraine is demanding at least four additional military systems, including the long-range missile Athaxes, which has a range of about 190 km and can hit the Russian mainland, but it is highly likely that this will not be accepted, the New York Times predicted.

However, the New York Times reported that the Ukrainian military is so talented in its ability to make use of available resources creatively and improvisedly that it has been called the "MacGyver army."

In the process of reclaiming Snake Island, a strategic point in the northwestern part of the Black Sea, about 48 km from the southern tip of the mainland, from the Russian army, Ukraine showed a way to solve the problem of lack of range by loading a Cesar self-propelled howitzer with a range of 40 km on a barge and firing from the sea. there is.

One such example is the sinking of the Moscow ship, which was called Russia's strongest battleship in the early days of the war, with a missile modified by the Ukrainian military.

The New York Times explained, "The United States is looking for an older, cheaper alternative weapon," and "don't shoot a $150,000 missile to shoot down a $20,000 drone."

(Photo = Getty Image Korea)