On May 9, 2022, President Biden signed the Ukraine Democracy Defense Lend-Lease Act, a revival of the World War II lend-lease program that will enable a quicker turnover of weapons and equipment to Ukraine to help them defend against the Russian assault in Donbas, where Russia looks to completely “liberate” Donbas.

According to the newly signed law, President Biden can authorize the US Government to lend or lease defense articles to the Government of Ukraine and the governments of Eastern European countries that were affected by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine for the fiscal years 2022 and 2023. This was done in order to make the process of transferring weapons to Ukraine faster.

However, as all deals have, there are conditions. Any loan or lease of “defense articles” to Ukraine is subject to return, reimbursement, and repayment for any weapons or military equipment. President Biden holds power to establish the expedited procedures for the delivery of these weapons that were loaned or leased.

A Brief Summarized History of the Lend-Lease Act

While it is of tremendous importance that all allies of Ukraine do their part in providing assistance to their country, the Lend-Lease Act is not new to the US, especially for those familiar with its history. The first Lend-Lease Act was enacted on March 11th, 1941, which enabled the United States to supply its allies with much-needed weapons, food, oil, and other war-related necessities between 1941 and 1945.

The Lend-Lease Act ended the United States’ neutrality that was enacted by law in the Neutrality Acts of the 1930s, largely because of the Great Depression as World War I was notably very expensive to undertake. But how did we get to the Lend-Lease Act?