Originally appeared at RT Deutsch, translated by John T. Sumner exclusively for SouthFront
The Pentagon plans to permanently deploy American troops, tanks and other armored vehicles in Eastern Europe. During his visit to Hannover, US President Barack Obama has already received an assurance by Angela Merkel, that even Germany will deploy military close to the Russian border. Further details are to be announced at the NATO summit in Warsaw. However, media in the US have already published particulars regarding the planned American troop contingents.
According to the US Department of Defense in an interview by the Wall Street Journal, those troops, additionally deployed in Eastern Europe, will also include 250 tanks, Bradley combat vehicles, Paladin howitzers and more than 1,700 other vehicles and trucks.
“We will also show and improve our skills to quickly redeploy equipment and staff to Europe, by letting personnel, officially stationed in the US, rotate with their own equipment. This will be the most advanced equipment the Army currently has to offer. In the coming year we will thereby replace the less advanced equipment, that was standard in Europe thus far”, Pentagon spokeswoman Laura Siegel told Fox News.
The language regulation, that allegedly no NATO military will be deployed “permanently” on the soil of former Warsaw Pact states, takes into account the NATO-Russia Agreement of 1997. Back then, the verbal commitment of US Secretary of State, James Baker, had been formalized, that in the time to come no NATO-troops would ever be stationed east of the former “Iron curtain”.
Meanwhile, even German Chancellor Angela Merkel has adopted the legal sophistry, that troops from various NATO countries would merely “rotate” in Eastern Europe. By this language regulation, the NATO countries simply want to conceal the fact, that they are already breaching the NATO-Russia Agreement.
Through this regulation a fixed number of foreign military personnel will be deployed in the Baltics and Poland permanently. However, officially these troops are specifying their home garrison as located west of the former East-West border. By swapping the individual soldiers rapidly, thus letting them “rotate”, the high command is capable of keeping the number of staff equally high without having to station individual soldiers permanently.
Deputy Secretary of Defense, Robert Work, told the Wall Street Journal that military in divisional strength will be garrisoned in Eastern Europe permanently – troops, which will also “fight, when the need arises.” Under consideration of the legal wording, Pentagon spokeswoman, Laura Siegel, stated, that this would mean to equip US tank units with the most modern and efficient technology and “letting them train in Europe continuously”.
The language regulation at the European Command of the US Army reads as follows: Combat troops “rotate for nine months from the United States” in the strength of a tank brigade: “For the Army this is a big step towards a rotating presence in order to improve and enhance the combat equipment in Europe, “argues General Phil Breedlove.
The Obama administration already approved the blueprint for a plan to be implemented from February 2017 on. Hence the expenses of 3.4 million dollars for the “European Reassurance Initiative” are already firmly budgeted.
Currently, the US forces “rotate” at a strength of 4,200 soldiers in six NATO member states of Eastern Europe – Lithuania, Estonia, Latvia, Poland, Romania and Bulgaria. General Ben Hodges, commander of the US Army in Europe, outlined the new reality to The Wall Street Journal: The new plan will provide a “constant US presence along the entire NATO border”. “There will be American equipment and personnel in each of these countries,” Hodges said.