Army reducing 1,900 soldiers from Germany

Army reducing 1,900 soldiers from Germany
© Greg Nash

The Pentagon announced Wednesday the U.S. Army will reduce its aviation forces in Germany by about 1,900. 

To make up for the reduction, the Army will rotate soldiers and equipment through on a continuous basis.  

"Aviation assets will be augmented even further in the event we need to surge capabilities beyond normal levels," a Pentagon statement said. 

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The move comes as Moscow is taking increasingly aggressive moves in Eastern Europe. Its forces invaded Ukraine last year and annexed Crimea. Since then, it has been supporting pro-Russian separatists in Eastern Ukraine. 

To complement the brigade, the Army will provide a rotational presence of an aviation battalion task force, two medical evacuation teams, and an Air Traffic Service Company, the statement said.   

The units rotating to Europe will support Operation Atlantic Resolve, a NATO exercise aimed at reassuring Ukraine and U.S. allies in the region, as well as major training exercises in Central and Eastern Europe and Germany, it said. 

In addition, 2,850 family members will also be leaving, the Pentagon said. Three local national employee positions will be reduced in the near term, the statement said. 

"Long-term impacts on local national employment will not be clear until the restructuring is complete," the statement said. 

Defense Secretary Ash Carter spoke with the German Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen about the restructure on Wednesday, and vowed to stay closely connected throughout the process. 

"The Secretary and the Minister expressed mutual appreciation for the strong military relationship between the United States and Germany and both are looking forward to meeting again in Europe," the Pentagon said.