19:40 GMT +319 February 2017
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    M1A2 Abrams Main Battle Tanks are lined up on rail cars

    US Army Deploys Thousands of Troops and Dozens of Tanks to Eastern Europe

    © Flickr/ 7th Army Joint Multinational Training Command
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    The US military has begun the deployment of 4,000 troops and 87 tanks to Eastern Europe, German media reported on Thursday.

    The US army is unloading 87 tanks and other military equipment including jeeps and howitzers from three transport ships at the German port of Bremerhaven, Germany's Radio Bremen reported on Friday.

    The equipment is being transported to Poland by rail, from where it will be distributed across the Baltic States, Bulgaria and Romania. A spokesman for the German Bundeswehr in Brandenburg said that a total 900 wagons would be required to transport the freight by rail, with a total length of 14 kilometers.

    The extra military presence is part of the Atlantic Resolve operation launched by the US military in April 2014, in the aftermath of the US-backed Maidan coup d'etat in Ukraine. 

    The US has used claims of Russian military interference in Ukraine as the pretext for its military build-up in Eastern Europe, which Russia regards as a security threat. 

    In the past ten years NATO's presence along Russia's western borders has grown eightfold, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said last month.

    Shoigu also referred to NATO military exercises carried out close to the Russian border, including the Anaconda war game which took place last June, the largest military exercise in eastern Europe since the end of the Cold War.

    In July NATO held a summit in Warsaw, where defense ministers finalized arrangements to deploy multinational NATO battalions to Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland, totaling around 4,000 troops.

    The summit also confirmed the deployment of anti-ballistic missile systems and radars in Romania and Poland and confirmed that the United States would deploy 1,000 troops in Poland, allegedly to defend it against claimed Russian "aggression."

    Last month commander of US Army Europe Ben Hodges told the German magazine Der Spiegel that the US will continue to pursue military buildup in Europe in spite of the election of Donald Trump, who pledged to end the US commitment to European defense during his campaign.

    "We will remain here, and we will remain the leader of NATO," he said.

    Hodges added that Democratic and Republican members of Congress had written to Trump urging him to maintain the US presence in Europe.

    "They (the senators) want the US to remain in Europe, they want the deterrent against Russia," the commander said.

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    Tags:
    military buildup, NATO, US military, Army, Baltic Region, Germany, Poland, Russia, Romania, Bulgaria
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    • avatar
      copius
      USA will be cutting back troops in Europe after they meet a grave accident by the hand of God which will consume 80% of its resources.
    • avatar
      peaceactivist2
      What is the use if there is no use of such tools? As grown men, if you build up, there must be a fight. If there is a build up but no fight is a lose face isn't it?
    • avatar
      marcanhalt
      Ben Hodges, like so many others, wants to pick a fight and he does not care who it is. It is the way of these "GI Joes" that come out of the military academies. It is not the way of "GI Trump." You can expect, that is if you are really interested, to find yourself scouring the search engines as to "what happened to Ben Hodges?" I hope he packed light before he tried to show off in front of all his friends in Congress.
    • American Socialist
      that is suspicious..
      NATO has been pivoting to Eastern Europe, stockpiling weapons and soldiers.. as if they are planning for, or know of, a coming war?
    • avatar
      cast235
      NATO, and all it's countries sound like a BULLY that want to show off to scare the rough guy's. The BIG issue is that Russia give them attention, IF I was running Russia I would ignore them ALL.
      When you pay attention to the BULLY, it will keep showing OFF and worst will keep at it, because it got all it been looking for..ATTENTION.
      New resolution for 2017. IGNORE the BULLY.

      Wait until it THINKS is scaring someone, grow confident and cross the territory land. Send him out with a real BLOODY nose.
      END of BULLYING.
    • avatar
      anne00marie
      Will they be called back in 2 weeks?
    • avatar
      Denis the Menacein reply toAmerican Socialist(Show commentHide comment)
      American Socialist, They are planning on attacking East Ukraine,hoping that the Russians will back down.
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