World View: Poland Welcomes Biggest Deployment of U.S. Troops in Decades

The Associated Press
The Associated Press

This morning’s key headlines from

  • Poland welcomes biggest deployment of American tanks and troops in decades
  • US troop deployment in Poland angers Russia

Poland welcomes biggest deployment of American tanks and troops in decades

Prime Minister of Poland Beata Szydlo and Maj. Gen. Jaroslaw Mika, commander of Poland's 11th Armored Cavalry Division, conduct a review of U.S. and Polish troops during an official ceremony in Zagan, Poland (DVIDS)
Prime Minister of Poland Beata Szydlo and Maj. Gen. Jaroslaw Mika, commander of Poland’s 11th Armored Cavalry Division, conduct a review of U.S. and Polish troops during an official ceremony in Zagan, Poland (DVIDS)

People across Poland are celebrating “Operation Resolve,” the arrival to Poland the largest U.S. military deployment to Europe in decades. The deployment includes about 4,000 troops and also 2,400 pieces of military equipment, including tanks and Humvees.

The deployment is a reaction to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea peninsula. Other countries in eastern Europe are concerned that they will be the next victim of a Russian invasion, and it’s hoped that the presence of US troops will deter Russia.

Prime Minister Beata Szydlo said,

Welcome to Poland… The presence of American soldiers in Poland is another step in our strategy to ensure safety and security for Poland and the region…

It’s a great day today when we can welcome, here in Zagan, American soldiers who represent the best, the greatest army in the world.

Poland’s Defense Minister Antoni Macierewicz said:

We have waited for you for a very long time. We waited for decades, sometimes feeling we had been left alone, sometimes almost losing hope, sometimes feeling that we were the only ones who protected civilization from aggression that came from the east.

The American troops will be part of a Nato contingent that will include troops from Britain and Canada. The troops will be rotated every nine months through Poland, the Baltic countries, Bulgaria and Romania in order to provide a technical workaround to a promise made to Moscow after the fall of the Soviet Union that Nato would not permanently base large numbers of forces east of Germany. Deutsche Welle and CNN and AFP

US troop deployment in Poland angers Russia

Russia’s president Vladimir Putin is always calling everyone he dislikes “Nazis” and “Fascists,” but he does not like to admit that Russians were also “Nazis and Fascists” prior Adolf Hitler’s invasion of Russia. Hitler and Josef Stalin had signed a treaty (the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact) in 1939 where they split up Poland between them. The agreement also divided Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Finland, and Romania between the Nazis and the Communists. It was only in 1941, when the Nazis invaded Russia, that Stalin finally learned being a Nazi is not a good thing. Even so, after Hitler was defeated, Stalin’s Soviet forces occupied Poland and other east European countries for decades.

These events are far ancient history to today’s young generations in America and Western Europe, but they are still very raw memories to the people of Poland and other East European countries. They have seen Russia invade and annex parts of Georgia and Ukraine, and they have no doubts that Russia would invade their countries, as has happened in the past.

Putin press spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that the U.S. troops in Poland would be “a threat to Russia’s national security.”

It is hard to believe that 5,000 American troops would be a threat to Russia’s security, inasmuch as Russia has something like 330,000 troops along its western border. Furthermore, Russia has long-range Iskander cruise missiles in Kaliningrad that can be made nuclear.

The US deployment is being described as a “tripwire” force, designed to prevent Russia from getting away with an easy invasion of some other country, as they did with Georgia and Ukraine. It’s thought that Russia would not be willing to risk a larger war by attacking an American force of any size.

Russian military expert Vladimir Kozin says that another reasons for the deployment is that outgoing President Obama wants to box in Donald Trump:

According to the German military, some 900 railroad cars will be needed to deliver all this equipment to the deployment sites. But what is the reason? First, [US President Barack] Obama wants to play a mean trick on President-elect Donald Trump who won the election.

It is worth mentioning that there’s one other possible theory why Obama did this in the last few days of his administration: It is possible that Trump asked Obama to do it before leaving office, so that he wouldn’t have to do it.

Kozin said that the deployment is unprecedented since the collapse of the Soviet Union, and that the US is forcing Europe to accept it:

Finally, the US wants to maintain tensions around the world and particularly in Europe. They want to turn the region into another tinderbox ready to ignite. This number one priority…

The US and NATO plan to increase aerial, anti-submarine, missile defense and intelligence activities with the use of heavy military equipment. In order to justify sanctions, the situation needs to be tense all the time. Europe is becoming a prisoner of this new Cold War initiated by Obama.

Sputnik News (Moscow) and Deutsche Welle (14-Nov-2016) and Sky News

Related Articles

KEYS: Generational Dynamics, Poland, Beata Szydlo, Jaroslaw Mika, Antoni Macierewicz, Operation Resolve, Ukraine, Crimea, Bulgaria, Romania, Russia, Vladimir Putin, Adolf Hitler, Josef Stalin, Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact, Dmitry Peskov, Kaliningrad, Vladimir Kozin
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