Over the last 30 years, many of the world’s largest and most advanced nations have decreased their production capacity for weapons and ammunition. This was a result of a perceived decrease in the threat of war. However, the war in Ukraine has changed this scenario. As that war approaches its two-year anniversary, both Russia and Ukraine are running low on ammunition.
According to one source, Ukraine uses 6,000 to 8,000 shells per day (The Wall Street Journal, November 27, 2023). Ukraine cannot produce enough of its own munitions and relies primarily on NATO nations to supply its needs. However, this has greatly depleted munitions supplies throughout Europe. According to a report from the International Institute for Strategic Studies, should the UK get into a “high intensity conflict,” it would exhaust its ammunition supplies in just eight days. Germany would fare far worse, exhausting its supplies in just a few hours to a few days! The European Union had promised to provide Ukraine with one million rounds of ammunition by March 2024, a goal it now says it will not meet, even with manufacturing efforts increasing by 20 to 30 percent.
Russia is in a similar situation. Even with the Russian military industrial complex churning out munitions at a wartime pace, sources have noticed major ammunition contributions from Iran and North Korea. Although selling munitions to other nations generates revenue and assists one’s allies, it also depletes stocks from the source nations. As leaders are learning, increasing weapons production takes time.
World conditions are pushing nations to increase their weapons production capacity. Bible prophecy speaks of a future time when the potential for global warfare will motivate nations to beat their plowshares into swords and their pruning hooks into spears (Joel 3:10). As we watch the world prepare for war, we must remember that Jesus Christ will eventually return to bring an end to war and show us the way to global peace (Isaiah 9:6–7)! To learn more about the conflicts to come, read or listen to Armageddon and Beyond.