Washington (GPA) – As hearings about Trump’s alleged collusion with Russia take place in the US Senate, the US is making plans to move more troops to Poland in the next month.
The arrival of more US troops moving to the Polish border with Russia was confirmed this week by the battlegroup commander Army Lt. Colonel Steven Gventer. The new deployment is, of course, part of a further “response” to ‘Russian hostility’ following the annexation of Crimea.
The new deployment will be adding to NATO forces already deployed in the region by an additional 1,200. The group of 1,200 will be made up primarily of 900 US soldiers but will also include 150 British troops and 120 Romanians.
Col. Gventer also decided to make clear in his statement that the arrival of the new troops is strictly for preparation for a possible conflict with Russia. In the news conference following the announcement Gventer told reporters that this deployment “is a mission, not a cycle of training events,” with the “purpose is to deter aggression in the Baltics and in Poland.”
More ominous is Gventer’s warning that the new troops are “fully ready to be lethal.”
The 1,200 troops are just the latest addition to about 4,000 NATO personnel already operating in Poland and throughout the Baltic States.
All of this is of course happening while opponents of Trump in the US continue to paint him as a puppet of the Kremlin. If this were true, then it would be highly unlikely that Trump would be bolstering the defenses of one of the top anti-Russian governments.
Poland has seen an increase in Russophobia since the Crimean referendum in 2014. The conservative government in Warsaw constantly warns of the imminent Russian threat and is possibly the most responsible of Russia’s neighbors for increasing tensions in Eastern Europe. The US buildup only helps to legitimize these claims under the guise of committing to protect all of Europe from some unlikely Russian occupation.
Later this year will also see a large scale military drill carried out by Russia near their borders with the Baltic states; a semi-regular exercise the West is using as justification for the latest troop buildup.
With the military exercise as the only ‘proof’ of a possible military campaign by Russia, it’s no surprise that Moscow actually sees the NATO troops as a threat to their own security. This sentiment was voiced by Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Aleksey Meshkov who told reporters that “the steps by NATO gravely increase the risk of incidents” between Russian and western forces.
Some Poles have already accused Russia of attacking them in some forms including alleged “Russian cyber attacks” against local government assets in the towns hosting US troops. These accusations most likely make US military and political leaders happy as they continue with their campaign at home of accusing Russia of hacking everything from the DNC to the 2016 election.
Clearly the ‘Russian puppet’ in the White House is carrying on the same hostile policies towards Russia as Barack Obama. If nothing else, this should at least make NATO allies happy that clearly the Trump administration is not as hostile to their goals as he sounded on the campaign trail.
Also published on Medium.