U.S. troops reach Poland in anti-Russian aggression NATO-support exercises

By Andrew V. Pestano Follow @AVPLive9 Contact the Author   |  Jan. 10, 2017 at 1:27 PM
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Jan. 10 (UPI) -- U.S. troops arrived in the small town of Drawsko Pomorskie, Poland, as part of the largest armed military brigade deployed in Europe since the end of the Cold War.

The U.S. troops, along with 53 track vehicles, including the M109 Paladin self-propelled howitzer, reached Poland after a three-day journey through Germany. The show of force falls under Operation Atlantic Resolve, designed to show the United States' commitment to its European allies in the face of what NATO sees as Russian aggression.

U.S. soldiers also arrived in Wrocław, a city in southwest Poland in which a key NATO and Polish airbase is located.

On Friday, nearly 2,800 pieces of military equipment arrived in Germany when the U.S. Army's 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, reached the port at Bremerhaven before setting off for Poland.

The U.S. troops will spend about a month training in Poland before moving to Germany and Romania for additional training exercises.

"Let me be very clear, this is one part of our efforts to deter Russian aggression, ensure territorial integrity of our allies and maintain a Europe that is whole, free, prosperous and at peace," U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Tim Ray, deputy commander of U.S. European Command, said.

The troops will rotate training in Bulgaria, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania and Slovakia for the next nine months. The regional training exercises are also designed to test how U.S. forces respond on short notice to a possible conflict with Russia.

"This is a tangible sign of the United States' commitment to maintaining peace on this continent," Maj. Gen. Timothy McGuire, deputy commanding general of the U.S. Army Europe, said in a statement. "It is a sign of the U.S. commitment to this alliance and to peace and prosperity in Europe."

Editor's note: An earlier version of this story described Operation Atlantic Resolve as a NATO operation. It is a U.S.-funded operation intended to support NATO.

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