US troops in Europe have been put on heightened alert amid concern over Moscow’s reaction to setbacks in Ukraine
The top US general is said to have reviewed the defenses of a base in Poland and called on US troops in Europe to be in a heightened state of readiness amid uncertainty over Russia’s reaction to battles over the battlefield in Ukraine.
“The war is not going very well for Russia at the moment, so it is incumbent on all of us to maintain a high state of readiness, alert,” he added. Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Mark Milley told reporters on Sunday after visiting an unidentified base in Poland.
The unidentified base – journalists traveling with Milley have sworn to secrecy about its location – was built shortly before Russia launched its military offensive against Ukraine last February. It would have been a key hub for training Ukrainian forces and delivering arms to the former Soviet republic. Due to its role in the conflict, US officials have suggested the base could become a target of attack by Russia.
“I’m particularly interested in checking things like force protection to make sure that [US forces] are in an adequate state of preparedness in case anything happens,” Milley said. He added that Russia’s recent losses of territory in the Kharkov region do not necessarily mean that there is an increased threat of attack against US forces, but he noted, “In the conduct of war, you just don’t know with any high degree of certainty what’s going to happen next.”
Russian officials have warned that Washington has become directly involved in the Ukraine conflict and even boasted about the Pentagon’s involvement in kyiv’s battlefield successes. The United States has sent more than $15 billion in direct military aid to Ukraine so far this year, and it has deployed about 10,000 additional troops to Europe.
Milley reviewed the Polish base’s air defenses, including two Patriot missile batteries. He claimed that the conflict had entered a new phase, with Kyiv having obtained the strategic initiative. “Because of this, we have to watch Russia’s reactions to this very closely.”
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