Democrat President Joe Biden administration is reportedly in the final stages of writing military orders “identifying specific military units” that it wants to send to Eastern Europe as it claims that Russia is likely to invade Ukraine in the near future.
“The goal of sending military reinforcements to Eastern Europe would be to provide deterrence and to reassure allies, and there’s been no suggestion US troops would deploy to Ukraine or take part in any combat roles,” CNN reported. “The US sent two weapons shipments to Ukraine over the past week as part of recently directed security assistance to help bolster Ukraine’s military.”
Biden is considering the deployment of “several thousand U.S. troops, as well as warships and aircraft, to NATO allies in the Baltics and Eastern Europe, an expansion of American military involvement amid mounting fears of a Russian incursion into Ukraine,” The New York Times reported. “The move would signal a major pivot for the Biden administration, which up until recently was taking a restrained stance on Ukraine, out of fear of provoking Russia into invading.”
The report said that senior military officials told Biden that he could deploy up to 5,000 U.S. troops to the region with the ability to ramp that number up “tenfold if things deteriorate.” Biden is expected to make a decision as early as this week about what course of action he will take.
“After years of tiptoeing around the question of how much military support to provide to Ukraine, for fear of provoking Russia, Biden officials have recently warned that the United States could throw its weight behind a Ukrainian insurgency should [Russian President Vladimir] Putin invade Ukraine,” the report added. “And the deployment of thousands of additional American troops to NATO’s eastern flank, which includes Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, Biden administration officials said, is exactly the scenario that Mr. Putin has wanted to avoid, as he has seen the western military alliance creep closer and closer to Russia’s own border.”
NATO countries are also increasing their readiness to respond to any Russian military aggression in Ukraine by sending forces toward Eastern Europe. NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said on Monday that NATO’s main goal right now was to prevent military conflict in Ukraine.
“And that’s exactly why we send a very clear message to Russia that if they once again decide to use force against Ukraine, it will come with a high costs for Russia. Economic, financial, political sanction,” Stoltenberg said. “NATO Allies also provide support to Ukraine. Ukraine has of course the right to self-defense as every sovereign nation has. And NATO Allies help them to uphold that right to self-defense with the support Allies provided to Ukraine.”
“And then of course, we also need to make sure that there is no misunderstanding, no room for miscalculation about NATO’s readiness to protect and defend all Allies,” he continued. “And that’s also the reason why we – since 2014 when Russia used force against Ukraine last time, annexed Crimea, and invaded Donbass, Eastern Ukraine-, we have implemented the biggest reinforcement our collective defense in a generation with increased NATO presence in the eastern part of the Alliance including with a German led battlegroup in Lithuania.”