Friday, August 7, 2020

Strategic Move – U.S. Troops and HQs Going From Germany to Poland and Belgium

While most of the media fixate on President Trump’s stated motives for removing a few thousand U.S. troops from Germany, they ignore the bigger strategic picture. As noted by AP, “Defense Secretary Mark Esper said that while the decision was ‘accelerated’ by Trump’s orders, the moves also promote larger strategic goals to deter Russia, reassure European allies and shift forces further east into the Black Sea and Baltic regions.”

SEE ALSO: U.S. and Allied Forces in Black Sea ‘Sending Message’ to Russia

Yes, Trump wanted to speed up this move due to German Chancellor’s Angela Merkel’s continuing delinquency in not meeting Germany’s minimal 2% defense spending commitment to NATO, but as AP reports, the move is also “closely tied to the plan to increase the U.S. troop presence in Poland, a shift long desired by Warsaw and Polish President Andrzej Duda” (RELATED: U.S. Right to Send Troops From Germany to Pacific – but Don’t Forget Poland).

As AP reported:

Under an agreement announced last year, the U.S. said it was sending about 1,000 more troops to Poland, and progress is being made to prepare for those moves. Under that agreement, the U.S. will add a division headquarters, a combat training center, an unmanned aircraft squadron and structure to support a rotational Army brigade.

Out of 11,000 soldiers taken from Germany, 5,600 will be sent to other countries in Europe, including Poland and Italy, but that will leave 24,000 still based in Germany.  AP added that “in the future other units would rotate in and out of Europe.”

Another major move in this strategic realignment would shift U.S. European Command (USEUCOM) headquarters and Special Operations Command Europe (SOCEUR) from Stuttgart, Germany, to Belgium. This would place these U.S. commands nearer to NATO Headquarters.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, meanwhile, welcomed the U.S. move and said Washington has been consulting allies on the matter recently, according to AP.

Significantly, notes AP, “Germany is a hub for U.S. operations in the Middle East and Africa.” The decision to keep nearly half the forces [moved out of Germany] in Europe is a clear move by the Pentagon to assuage allies by avoiding the complete withdrawal of 12,000 troops out of the region.”

And by spreading forces into the east, AP adds, “it sends a message to Russia that the U.S. is not reducing its commitment to the region and remains ready to protect Eastern Europe from Moscow aggression.”

This is the real strategic significance of the U.S. moving troops out of Germany.

READ NEXT: U.S. Won’t ‘Allow Russia and China to Continue’ Nuclear Arms Buildup >>

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Paul Crespo
Paul Crespo
Paul Crespo is a defense and national security expert. He served as a Marine Corps officer and as a military attaché with the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) at US embassies worldwide. He holds degrees from Georgetown, London, and Cambridge Universities. Paul is also CEO of SPECTRE Global Risk, a security advisory firm, and a Contributor to American Defense News.

4 COMMENTS

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hoyt matise
8 days ago

I cannot understand the legitimacy of addressing the Corona Virus as a pandemic with 150K+- deaths in relation to 230M+- US population? Someone is over sensationalizing this occurrence with an ulterior motive! Americans want to go to work – OPEN the economy to accommodate the workers! The “mask” thing is exaggerated by the media and should be OPTIONAL, if anything! Get the damn economy open and ginning again!!!

Craig Murphy
Craig Murphy
8 days ago
Reply to  hoyt matise

More in the order of 325 million. Hong Kong flu saw 100,000 American deaths in a population of 200 million in 69-70. Extrapolates to about 165,000 today and nothing shut down.

As to the subject at hand, what Germany will miss is the spending of 11K soldiers.

A. D Roberts
6 days ago
Reply to  hoyt matise

The big thing they are hiding is the severity of the virus. Sure, for a few, it is deadly. But for 10 out of 20 who test positive, a great many have no symptons. And the rest get over it quickly.
On a list of real pandemics, Corona is number 18. And the 17 that were worse did not merit any shutdowns, or drive for vaccines. So what is the panic about? It is about destroying the ECONOMY so they can blame Trump. No, that is not working. But they will CLAIM it is working so the massive fraudulent voting will be covered as real.

A. D Roberts
6 days ago

Germany is no longer our ally. Neither is France or Canada. Belgium is the center of the Bilderbergs who want to take us down. Trump is moving to our real allies.

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