There are 100,000 U.S. troops in Europe as of Thursday, as NATO increases its presence in the eastern flank and Russia‘s invasion of Ukraine enters its fourth week.
In a press conference alongside Germany’s minister of foreign affairs, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said the number of American soldiers in Europe has increased by several thousands in the last several weeks.
Stoltenberg said NATO has increased its deterrence and defense, especially in the eastern part of the alliance, with hundreds of thousands of troops on “heightened alert.”
There are now 40,000 troops under direct NATO command, Stoltenberg said.
“This is our immediate response sending a clear message to Moscow that an attack on one ally will trigger a response from the whole alliance,” he said. “Deterrence of defense is not about provoking a conflict but prevents a conflict. It’s about preserving peace.”
“I fully understand the devastation and desperation that President Zelenskyy and the Ukrainian people feel because they’re in an extremely difficult situation where they see civilian casualties, destruction every single day including attacks on hospitals, schools, civilian infrastructure,” he added.