US military moving tanks, other equipment to allied nations near Russian border

Tuesday, June 23, 2015
By Paul Martin
June 23, 2015

Defense Secretary Ash Carter announced Tuesday that the U.S. will deploy heavy weaponry — including about 250 tanks, armored vehicles and other equipment — across six European nations including those along the Russian border.

The move is meant to help reassure NATO allies facing an array of threats from Russia and terrorist groups. It is only the latest message being telegraphed to an increasingly assertive Vladimir Putin, in the wake of his country’s intervention in eastern Ukraine.

The equipment is set to be stationed in the Baltic states — Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania — as well as Bulgaria, Poland and Romania.

Each set of equipment would be enough to equip a military company or battalion, and would go on at least a temporary basis to those six nations. Carter said the equipment could be moved around the region for training and military exercises, and would include Bradley fighting vehicles and self-propelled howitzer artillery guns.

“We intend to move those equipment sets around as exercises move around,” Carter told a news conference. “They’re not static. Their purpose is to enable richer training and more mobility to forces in Europe.” He said the U.S. presence will be “persistent” but “agile.”

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