Raytheon Gets $624 Million Ukraine Weapons Contract from Pentagon

The Pentagon has awarded a $624 million contract to arms giant Raytheon to make up for the Stinger missiles sent to the Ukrainian military.

Source: defense.gov/News/Contracts/Contract/Article/3046664/

Raytheon Co., Tucson, Arizona, was awarded a $624,601,212 modification (P00007) to contract W31P4Q-21-D-0007 for the procurement of Stinger missiles and associated equipment. Work locations and funding will be determined with each order, with an estimated completion date of June 30, 2026. U.S. Army Contracting Command, Redstone Arsenal, Alabama, is the contracting activity. (Awarded May 25, 2022)

The Department of Defense contract gives Raytheon four years to manufacture the shoulder-fired missiles.

According to a company statement, Raytheon will produce 1,300 Stingers.

Although Raytheon stopped making the missiles in 2020, the defense firm won a contract in 2021 to start production again, mainly for foreign buyers.

Raytheon CEO Greg Hayes said in April that the US military has not purchased a Stinger in 18 years, and that some of the missile’s electronic components will need to be redesigned, as certain components are no longer commercially available.

US policy of sending thousands of Stingers to Ukraine has put the aging weapon in high demand, and Raytheon, the former employer of Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, stands to make long-term profits on the war.

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin on Raytheon payroll

Earlier this month, Republican Rep. Mike Gallagher (Wisconsin) warned that the US had seriously depleted its stocks of Stinger and Javelin missiles in its rush to arm the Ukrainian military following the launch of Russia’s military operation in February. According to reports in April, the Pentagon had at that point burned through a quarter of its Stingers and a third of its Javelins.

The contract will be funded by a massive $40 billion appropriations bill, signed into law by President Joe Biden last week. The bill provided $8.7 billion to backfill US military stock already sent to Ukraine.

It is unclear how effective the Stingers have been in the hands of the Ukrainian military, or indeed how many of the weapons end up on the front lines. A US intelligence source told CNN last month that the agency has “almost zero” idea where US arms end up once they cross Ukrainian borders, describing the shipments as dropping “into a big black hole.”

Russia has declared Western weapons stockpiles in Ukraine “legitimate targets,” and frequently conducts air and missile strikes against them.