Trump treating the US military like his own toy box full of GI Joe action figures.
Courtesy of DW:
The US Department of Defense is examining options for withdrawing US forces stationed in Germany after President Donald Trump expressed interest in such a move, The Washington Post reported on Friday.
The newspaper, citing anonymous sources familiar with the evaluation, said officials were analyzing the cost and consequences of shifting either some or all 35,000 US troops to the US or Poland. Top defense officials, the paper said, have not been involved in the analysis.
The US Department of Defense rejected The Washington Post’s report on Friday evening. A Pentagon spokesman told German news agency DPA that the National Security Council had not received any cost analysis from the Ministry of Defense for relocating US troops stationed in Germany.
Trump had reportedly shown interest in shifting US forces during a White House meeting earlier in the year after he had voiced shock at how many US troops were in Germany, the largest contingent of US forces in Europe.
The Pentagon is, of course, saying that this does not really mean anything and that no official plans have been discussed removing troops, but keep in mind how many times Trump just does something without consulting or bringing anybody into the discussion.
But what would be accomplished by this, and who could it possibly benefit?
Interesting you should ask that question.
Courtesy of Stars and Stripes:
A large military drawdown in Germany would be a “colossal mistake,” says the former top Army commander in Europe about a possible scaling back of the U.S. presence on the Continent, at a time when Russia has become more assertive.
“We need what Germany gives us in terms of basing and access and the chance to train and prepare from excellent fixed installations and facilities,” said retired Lt. Gen. Ben Hodges, who commanded U.S. Army Europe until late last year.
“If this is just a negotiating tactic, then it is putting unnecessary strain on our alliance, the most successful alliance in the history of the world,” Hodges said. “The big winner in this sort of situation is (Russian President Vladimir) Putin.”
Of course, there really could be no other answer.