Zelenskyy and other Ukraine officials have pressed Western leaders to provide more advanced weapons, including the Patriots, to help their country in its war with Russia.
The Patriot would be the most advanced surface-to-air missile system the West has provided to Ukraine to help repel Russian aerial attacks.
The timing of the military aid announcement — as Zelenskyy makes his first trip out of Ukraine since the war began — sends a strong message of continued U.S. support for Ukraine as the war drags on.
The aid comes as Congress is poised to approve another $44.9 billion in assistance for Ukraine as part of a massive spending bill.
That would ensure that U.S. support will continue next year and beyond as Republicans take control of the House in January.
But the White House is pushing back against the notion that delivery of the Patriot amounts to an escalation of U.S. involvement on behalf of Ukraine.
To date, all training of Ukraine forces by the U.S. and the West has taken place in European countries. »