Army chief says U.S. needs more troops, armor in Europe to deter Russia

U.S. Army Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Milley said that in order to deter Russian aggression, the service would need more troops in Europe, along with more armor and bridging capability.

“We, the Army, think that additional capability is probably needed, in combination with our NATO allies, to ensure deterrence of further Russian territorial aggression,” Milley told a group of defense reporters.

Last year the Army fielded 62,000 troops in Europe, which is far fewer than the quarter-million stationed there during the height of the Cold War, in the 1970s.

The Army has been adding forces to its European theater steadily over the past couple of years, to include more armor, with the objective of deterring Moscow.

“Our assessment to date is we believe we are on track with the size of the force,” Milley said. “In combination with NATO forces, we think that and the disposition of the exercises have been successful so far.”

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Jon E. Dougherty is a political, foreign policy and national security analyst and reporter with nearly 30 years of experience in both fields. A U.S. Army veteran of Operation Enduring Freedom, he holds BA in Political Science from Ashford University and an MA in National Security Studies/Intelligence Analysis from American Military University.

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