Germany launched an initiative to provide a series of Patriot systems to Ukraine, but received almost no response from its allies.

The German Ministry of Defense announced on May 20 that more than 12 NATO member countries have expressed support and plan to participate in the initiative to purchase air defense systems for Ukraine (IAAD) initiated by Berlin.

`Belgium, Denmark, Netherlands, Norway and Canada will provide finance. The US, UK, France, Spain, Romania, Belgium and Lithuania will directly transfer missiles and weapons. Latvia is also considering

IAAD aims to provide Ukraine with many air defense complexes, including Patriot, SAMP/T, NASAMS, MIM-23 HAWK, IRIS-T and S-300 to cope with Russian air strikes.

German Patriot missile launcher deployed in Slovakia in 2022. Photo: German Defense Ministry

Germany once owned 11 US-made Patriot long-range air defense complexes.

A series of top German officials, mainly Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock and Defense Minister Boris Pistorius, have called on allies in recent weeks to fulfill their commitment to provide complete Patriot complexes to Ukraine.

Spain and Greece repeatedly refused to provide complete Patriot complexes, although Madrid agreed to provide some interceptor missiles.

Romanian President Klaus Iohannis said that his US counterpart Joe Biden had asked the country to take action.

Experts believe that the reaction from Germany’s partner countries has caused IAAD to fail to meet expectations, even disappointing, because the Patriot is the weapon that Ukraine values ​​most today.

`There is no unity among key countries, Europe is not showing leadership. The urgency has not increased, many countries even expressed relief when the US began to resume aid to Ukraine.`

One of the reasons why Western countries hesitate to transfer Patriot to Ukraine is that the price is too high.

Germany struggled to find Patriot missiles for Ukraine

The Ukrainian Patriot launcher exploded after a Russian attack

The moment the Ukrainian Patriot launcher hit a Russian missile in a video released on March 9.

Fabian Hoffmann, a missile technology researcher at Norway’s Oslo University, emphasized that Patriot is an indispensable shield for many countries, making them unwilling to sacrifice domestic defense capabilities to fulfill their commitments.

`Germany is facing a huge gap in combat capabilities because of its help to Ukraine. The time for ordering and waiting for delivery of the Patriot system is getting longer and longer,` he said.

America’s Raytheon Corporation is the sole manufacturer of the Patriot system and is having to respond to a series of foreign orders, with waiting times that can be up to more than two years from the time of ordering to receiving the goods.

This leaves countries without a plan to fill the air defense gap if they transfer Patriot missiles to Ukraine, even though Kiev has repeatedly stated that the risk of Europe being attacked by air is very low.