U.S. President Joe Biden said that the United States will create a new permanent army headquarters in Poland and deploy additional land, air, and naval forces across Europe in response to threats from Russia.
New U.S. warships will go to Spain, fighter jet squadrons to Britain, ground troops to Romania, air defense units to Germany and Italy, and a wide range of assets to the Baltic states, Biden announced Wednesday at a NATO summit in Madrid.
He also underlined the Atlantic Alliance’s commitment to defend “every inch” of its territory.
“We mean it when we say that an attack on one is an attack on all,” he told reporters at the start of a meeting with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.
Steps by the previously neutral states of Finland and Sweden to join the alliance would make NATO stronger and all its members safer, he said.
“We are sending an unmistakable message… that NATO is strong and united and that the steps we take at this summit will further enhance our collective strength.”
Due to the changes, U.S. officials declined to provide details on how much additional personnel would be sent to Europe.
The U.S. military has already added some 20,000 additional troops to the continent since Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, bringing the total to about 100,000.
PermOfficials said that anent U.S. military headquarters in Poland would be joined by a field support battalion – the first permanent U.S. contingent on NATO’s eastern flank, office would bolster the office of U.S. and NATO forces to work together across the east side; Biden told reporters.
He said Washington would work with Spain to increase the number of U.S. destroyers in Rota, Spain, from four to six, which would help the U.S. Navy better respond to potential threats.
Washington will also place a rotating Brigade Combat Team (BCT) in Romania, adding “3,000 fighters and another 2,000 other ranks,” Mr. Biden said.
In the Baltics, the U.S. military will bolster its rotating deployment — which includes armored, aviation, air defense, and special operations forces — to maintain security and demonstrate the combat readiness of U.S. armed forces, the White House said in a fact sheet on the changes.
Two additional squadrons of advanced F-35 fighter jets will be sent to Britain.
The Pentagon will also add 625 troops in Germany to oversee and conduct air defense artillery operations, combat support, and technical missions. That adds to a recent power build that was announced in April 2021.
A short-range air defense battery will be stationed in Italy, adding 65 troops.
Stoltenberg told Biden the rise demonstrates the U.S. leader’s “decisive leadership”.
“We are going to ensure that NATO is ready to face threats from all directions and in every area,” said Mr. Biden.
“…We are proving that NATO is needed now more than ever.”
Asked about Turkey’s request for additional F-16 fighter jets, the senior official said Washington supported Turkey’s plans to modernize its military.
SepaOn Tuesday, aate official told reporters that Tueurkey’s requests for U.S. weapons were not part of an agreement dropping its objections to Sweden and Finland becoming NATO members.