US to increase military presence in Europe “in wake of an aggressive Russia”

WASHINGTON, March 30 (KUNA) — The US will increase its presence in Europe to three based armor brigade combat teams by 2017 “in the wake of an aggressive Russia,” said European Command (EUCOM) Commander General Phil Breedlove on Wednesday.
“This is a big step in enhancing the Army’s rotational presence and increasing their combat equipment in Europe,” said Breedlove said in a statement, announcing that by February 2017, a third armored brigade (3,200 to 5,500 troops) is to be added to the US Army rotation in Europe.
Breedlove reiterated, “Our Allies and Partners will see more capability – they will see a more frequent presence of an armored brigade with more modernized equipment in their countries.” He continued to explain that this US Army implementation plan “continues to demonstrate our strong and balanced approach to reassuring our NATO Allies and Partners in the wake of an aggressive Russia in Eastern Europe and elsewhere.” The armored brigades are to bring “their own modern equipment to conduct exercises across Atlantic Resolve countries,” which “demonstrate our ability to rapidly deploy equipment and forces to Europe,” Breedlove noted.
The US Army official concluded, “This equipment will enable rapid deployment of ground forces in response to contingencies throughout the region. It provides additional combat power, if and when needed”. (end) yt.hb