Sanctions that prevent Russia from obtaining electronic parts have taken a "bite" out of its ability to replenish precision-guided weapons, a Pentagon official said.
The official, who is not authorized to speak publicly about intelligence assessments, said there are signs that Russian supplies of precision weapons are dwindling, forcing the Russians to rely on older bombs that are not guided to their targets with satellites or lasers, the official said. So-called "dumb bombs" are being dropped in Mariupol, causing hundreds of civilian deaths and devastation to homes and businesses.
The assessment, revealed Tuesday, came as the House of Representatives passed a package of about $40 billion in additional aid money for Ukraine, $7 billion more than President Joe Biden requested from Congress.
"The additional resources included in this bill will allow us to send more weapons, such as artillery, armored vehicles, and ammunition, to Ukraine," Press Secretary Jen Psaki said in a statement Tuesday night. "And they will help us replenish our stockpile and support U.S. troops on NATO territory."
The bill now goes to the Senate - and Biden urged passage as soon as possible, saying he has "nearly exhausted" the existing aid money for Ukraine.
►Leonid Kravchuk, who led Ukraine to independence during the collapse of the Soviet Union and served as its first president, died Tuesday, Ukrainian officials said. He was 88.
►Lt. Gen. Scott Berrier, who leads the Defense Intelligence Agency, said Tuesday that eight to 10 Russian generals have been killed during the war in Ukraine.
►Ukraine's natural gas pipeline operator said Wednesday it would stop Russian shipments through a key hub in the east of the country.
US, Europe condemn Russian cyberattack prior to invasion
The United States, the European Union, and Britain collectively blamed Russia for a cyberattack on Ukraine that happened only one hour before Russian President Vladimir Putin's invasion on Feb. 24. The cyberattack disrupted satellite communications used by Ukraine's military, and also affected European countries, according to a statement from the EU released Tuesday.
"Cyberattacks targeting Ukraine, including against critical infrastructure, could spill over into other countries and cause systemic effects putting the security of Europe's citizens at risk," the statement said.
Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a statement Tuesday the cyberattack was only one in a series that began in mid-January. Russia's digital attacks on Ukraine included stolen and deleted data, disrupted telecommunications, and attempts to knock out power.
Contributing: The Associated Press
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Ukraine live updates: Russia struggles to replenish precision weapons