To compensate for a large amount supplied to Ukraine in recent weeks, the US intends to increase production of Stinger air defence missiles and Javelin anti-tank missiles.
Stinger anti-aircraft missiles and Javelin anti-tank missiles are weapons that the US and its Western allies have transferred to Ukraine in the past to counter Russian forces’ attacks. The US is said to be planning to increase production of these missiles to compensate for the missile stockpile that has been gradually withdrawn after supplying Ukraine.
The US Department of Defense does not reveal the remaining stock of missiles because it is a sensitive issue, but defence watchdogs believe that these reserve must at the very least ensure response in the event of a conflict.
Ukraine is estimated to require 500 Stinger and 500 Javelin missiles per day. As of March 7, less than two weeks after Russia launched its military operation in Ukraine, the United States and other NATO members had provided Russia with approximately 17,000 anti-tank missiles and 2,000 anti-aircraft missiles Ukraine.
On March 16, the White House announced a $800 million military aid package for Ukraine, including 800 more Stinger missiles and 2,000 Javelin missiles. The US Stinger missile production line had previously been shut down, but it was recently restarted to accommodate foreign orders. In addition to maintaining this line, the US plans to increase production and shorten delivery times after consulting with main contractor Raytheon, Pentagon spokeswoman Jessica Maxwell told me earlier this week.
Adding human resources to production lines and producing new components to replace obsolete components are two options for increasing output. Currently, depending on the size, US contractors take 18-24 months to produce a batch of Stinger missiles.
The Javelin production line has also been fully restored, but the Pentagon still wishes to increase output. According to US Department of Defense documents, the US can produce more than 6,000 Javelin missiles per year. According to a spokesman for Lockheed Martin, the company that manufactures the Javelin, the company is now able to meet the increased demand for the weapon in the near future.
The Stinger is a man-portable air defence system that can be used from helicopters with the Stinger air-to-air missile version. This missile has a 1,000-8,000m range, a two-man combat crew, and can be quickly deployed on military platforms in a combat situation.
Meanwhile, Javelin is the US military’s most modern anti-tank missile system, with superior firing capability when compared to other types of missiles. Javelin searches for targets using thermal imaging. The Javelin missile is designed to destroy enemy tanks and armoured vehicles, but it can also be effective when hitting buildings, fortifications, or even helicopters.