US supply troops have started an experiment on deployment and supply of troops, operating far away from the major bases in Germany.
While combat troops of the US Armed Forces are engaged in demonstration of its power in Poland and the Baltic States, supply troops of the European Command have started the biggest, since the Cold War, experiment on deployment and supply of troops, operating far away from the major bases in Germany, the Izvestiya newspaper reported.
According to Commander of the 21st Theater Sustainment, Major General Duane Gamble, in the next nine months, his subordinates will participate in at least 80 military exercises. In the course of the drills, responding to crisis situations and cooperation with military from various countries, members of the alliance, will be practiced in the framework of Operation Atlantic Resolve for protection of Poland and the Baltic states.
A basis for the military exercises will be the 16th Logistics Brigade, which is the main ‘striking power’ of the 21st Command. It is intensely being prepared for action on unfamiliar territory, where is no developed infrastructure of NATO – in the Baltic States, Poland and Romania.
A few days ago, the Jane’s information website reported that the brigade has completed the unloading of transport and attack helicopters, arrived by sea to the German port of Bremerhaven. Twenty four Apache helicopters, 94 Chinook and Black Hawk helicopters, as well as 350 pieces of ground hardware arrived to Europe. The most part of the hardware will formally remain in Germany, but, in reality, the consolidated squadrons will in rotation be sent to forward bases in Lithuania, Poland and Romania.
According to commander of the 16th Brigade, Colonel Michel Letcher, an ultimate goal of the all current efforts is “deterrence against Russian aggression.” At the same time, US military faced a number of challenges in Eastern Europe. Firstly, this is an underdeveloped road network. In particular, it was found out that railways in Lithuania were built according to the Soviet standards and have a wider track that greatly complicates a process of transportation of military hardware.
As official media outlets of the Pentagon reported, during the recent Trident Junture military exercises, some problems with refueling of vehicles also occurred, as the fuelling equipment is not standardized, and a US tanker cannot transfer fuel to a Polish truck.
At the same time, supply troops are engaged in a struggle against bureaucratic difficulties that are associated with the need to cross national borders in the course of the troops’ dispatch. For this reason, a specialist was directly sent to the US Embassy in Tallinn in order to deal with a problem of the displacement in collaboration with diplomats.
As director of the Center for Strategic Studies Ivan Konovalov told the newspaper, the intensification of actions of the US supply troops in Eastern Europe should not be considered as a sign of preparation to the war against Russia.
“The forces are too much unequal, and the new US administration understands an absurdity of the idea of a conflict with the nuclear power,” Konovalov said.
The expert noted that these events should be seen as another way of the US to demonstrate its seriousness to the NATO allies, which “cannot cope with the panic after the Ukrainian events.”