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article imageOp-Ed: US to send 20,000 troops and much equipment to European war games

By Ken Hanly     Dec 11, 2019 in Politics
Next year, the US army will undertake its largest deployment in Europe in 25 years. 20,000 US troops plus 13,000 pieces of equipment will be deployed across Europe to take part in war games beginning in May and through June.
A recent article describes the operation in detail: "The US Army is planning its biggest deployment of troops to Europe in 25 years, with 20,000 troops slated to take part in a massive force projection exercise at a time of increasingly adversarial relations with Russia. General Christopher Cavoli, the commander of US ground forces in Europe, said 20,000 US-based troops will deploy next year to Europe where they will join some 9,000 other US soldiers already stationed there.Some 37,000 troops will then take part in exercises across 10 European countries from May to June, he told reporters at the Pentagon.The US-based forces will begin flowing in in February, moving 13,000 pieces of equipment, including tanks, artillery and transport vehicles, across 2,500 miles (4,000 kilometers), he said." Notice the deployment is so large it will begin in February several months before the games begin in May. There are already 9,000 US troops in Europe. Imagine if Russia had 9,000 troops in Cuba and sent 20,000 more for war games. No doubt the US would take quick action against such a provocation.
Sputnik reports the war games will begin in April and run through May: "The joint multinational drills will take place in April-May 2020 with personnel and equipment movements starting in February. According to Major General Jeffrey Kramer, in charge of the EUCOM exercises, Defender Europe-20 will show resolve to all adversaries at a strategic level. Kramer added that the war games would be "the biggest thing since Reforger", referring to the large-scale military exercises held during the Cold War era." Interesting there is a reference to the Cold War era which seems to be starting over again.
Although not specified operation is no doubt aimed at Russia
General Cavoli would not define the war games as aimed at Russia but did say that Russia's annexation of Crimea in 2014 changed everything. Cavioli said: "The aim is to "demonstrate the US military's ability to quickly deploy a large force to support NATO and respond to any crisis. Our ability as an army to project power is absolutely fundamental to anything that we would get done."
Cavoli's remarks come
against the backdrop of continuing escalation in rhetoric against Russia.
Operation will be difficult
Many of the operations will be in Eastern Europe in countries formerly part of the Soviet Warsaw Pact. The railroads in these countries are not compatible with those in Western Europe as they have a narrower gauge. Also bridges were built without any thought they might have to support very heavy US tanks. The US Abrams tank weighs 70 tons.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of DigitalJournal.com
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