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Old 02-08-2020, 05:28 AM
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Default 20,000 U.S. troops deploying to Europe in biggest show of force since Cold War

20,000 U.S. troops deploying to Europe in biggest show of force since Cold War
By: Mike Glenn - The Washington Times - 02-08-20

About 20,000 U.S. troops will soon begin flooding into Europe as part of a massive, months-long military exercise that has been compared to the massive drills of the Cold War era, drills that were meant to help NATO forces beat back a hypothetical invasion from the Soviet Union.

Defender-Europe 20 is the largest military deployment to Europe in 25 years, military officials say. It is scheduled to run from April to July with operations occurring throughout parts of Germany, along with countries like Poland and the Baltic States that once were part of the Warsaw Pact. About 17,000 troops from 18 other NATO countries will take part in the U.S.-led division-level exercise.

NATO officials insist that no individual nation in the target of the massive exercise, but private analysts say the Kremlin will be taking copious notes as the forces deploy.

“Readiness is not only about having the right forces and capabilities in place throughout the theater. It’s about exercising our ability to quickly receive forces with our own and those of our allies and partners,” Lt. Gen. Christopher Cavoli, commander of U.S. Army Europe, said in a statement. “This ability is critical in projecting force at a moment’s notice. Our readiness reassures our allies and deters potential adversaries.”

With its history, its location on Russia’s doorstep, and its strong support of U.S. military operations in the region since becoming a NATO member, Poland is expected to play a major role in Defender-Europe 20.

“This exercise is not just symbolic. It gets to the heart of what we mean when we talk about collective European security,” said Georgette Mosbacher, U.S. Ambassador to Poland. “In a crisis, NATO must be able to respond as quickly as possible. Defender-Europe 20 simply could not happen without Poland.”

Bradley Bowman, senior director of the Center on Military and Political Power at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD), said he was asked repeatedly on a trip to Germany late last year whether the Trump administration still had an interest in the security of Europe. He said Russia President Vladimir Putin — or any other potential adversary — will wonder if the U.S. is militarily capable of rapidly sending a large number of combat troops to Europe, and whether Washington has will to do so.

O Almighty Lord God, who neither slumberest nor sleepest; Protect and assist, we beseech thee, all those who at home or abroad, by land, by sea, or in the air, are serving this country, that they, being armed with thy defence, may be preserved evermore in all perils; and being filled with wisdom and girded with strength, may do their duty to thy honour and glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

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