NATO Deploying 28,000 Troops Near Ukraine For War Games
As Russia refuses to withdraw around 80,000 troops around the Ukrainian border, NATO is set to amass 28,000 of its own troops for war games next to the Ukraine.
Pentagon spokesman John Kirby stated, "The Defender Europe exercise is going to conclude in June, but not before demonstrating joint-force readiness, lethality and interoperability, reinforcing the U.S. commitment to our allies and partners and providing an outstanding opportunity to highlight the superb job our men and women are doing every day and in the region—the Balkan and Black Sea regions in particular, and throughout Europe and the Africa area of operations."
The move by NATO is meant to show strong resolve to Russia through a show of strength of its own, as well as show its support for the Ukraine against what they call 'destabilizing actions' from Russia.
Although Russia pulled out a few thousand troops from around the border, the Pentagon has estimated that about 70,000 to 80,000 Russian soldiers remain stationed around the Ukrainian border. The soldiers that did leave left their equipment and armored vehicles behind, making it very easy for them to come back on a moments notice if they were ordered to do so.
Secretary of State Antony Blinken said, "We look to Russia to cease reckless and aggressive actions".
The military exercises being carried out by the United States and NATO has been dubbed "Defender-Europe 21" and is set to take place in 16 countries across Europe.