United States to withdraw 11,900 troops from Germany

  • United States to withdraw 11,900 troops from Germany

United States to withdraw 11,900 troops from Germany

The German government's transatlantic coordinator Peter Beyer criticized on Wednesday the plan of U.S. President Donald Trump to withdraw U.S. troops from Germany.

"On the US side, they can certainly make a much more convincing argument for this decision than for the decision to withdraw thousands of troops from Germany", Shea said.

The president's remarks appeared to undercut Esper, who at an earlier Pentagon briefing posed the withdrawal of 11,900 USA troops from Germany as part of a plan long underway to implement the National Defense Strategy by creating a leaner and more agile force in Europe better able to deter Russian Federation.

Some could also be relocated to Poland and the Baltic countries if Washington can reach agreements with them, he said.

The US has declared a long-term strategy to pull nearly 12,000 soldiers from Germany but will deploy approximately half of these everywhere around Europe.

It's also unclear whether the Trump administration's plan will survive if the president is not reelected in November.

"We are now waiting to see if the decision will last", Soeder said.

"Trump, meanwhile, said on Wednesday that the nation is" decreasing the force since they are not paying their invoices.

The troop reduction is expected to begin within weeks.

Still, the moves out of Germany represent a remarkable rebuke to one of the closest USA military allies and trading partners, while two beneficiaries, Italy and Belgium, are low-spending alliance members, according to North Atlantic Treaty Organisation data.

According to US EUCOM and NATO Supreme Allied Commander Europe, Tod Wolters, some of the key headquarters now based in Germany will be brought to NATO's SHAPE headquarters in Mons, Belgium, including possibly EUCOM HQ, while two other battalions will go to Italy. Esper is also looking at shifting troops permanently to Poland.

The planned relocation of 2,500 United States air force personnel from Britain to Germany has been cancelled.

"NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg stated in a statement that" that the U.S. has consulted carefully with NATO allies before the statement".

"Reducing the heavy concentration of troops in Germany enhances our defense posture", he wrote. "They've taken advantage of us for many years". The move has drawn harsh criticism from inside Trump's own party, as well as from USA experts.

The White House announced the move after repeated demands that Berlin pay a larger share of security costs for North Atlantic Treaty Organisation.

"So I also think President Trump of course was probably wary of Angela Merkel and the other way around", she added.

Merkel cited the ongoing coronavirus threat, while at the time, Trump maintained the virus´s spread was in decline. In an interview published Wednesday, Trump told Axios that in that conversation, he did not raise United States intelligence, alleging that Moscow offered rewards to Taliban fighters for killing USA troops in Afghanistan.

Agathe Demarais, director of global forecasting for The Economist Intelligence Unit, said the move is part of a larger story of disintegration in relations between the United States and Germany that "is due in part to mutual enmity between the political leaders of the two countries".