US in talks to move missile defense system to Germany: report
The U.S. military is considering plans to deploy the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) missile system to Germany in a powerful boost to Europe’s military defenses.
Reuters reports that preliminary discussions about the move were held before the U.S.’s withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal and were started in part over concerns about Iran’s continued development of nuclear missiles.
Trump’s early May announcement that the U.S. would abandon the pact aimed at preventing Iran from developing a nuclear missile added urgency to the talks.
Pentagon spokesman Eric Pahon cautioned that no plans to send the THAAD system have yet been authorized and that the Defense Department would not discuss military planning.
“There are currently no plans to station THAAD systems in Germany. We do not discuss potential future military planning, as we would not want to signal our intent to potential adversaries. Germany remains among our closest partners and strongest allies,” Pahon said.
According to Reuters, the THAAD missile system’s deployment in Germany would fill a gap in radar coverage caused by a delay in the construction of a Polish missile defense site that was supposed to open this year.
One U.S. official, who remained anonymous, said the deployment would send a clear message that the Trump administration was serious about European defense.
“It would be a further political message to the Europeans that we’re serious about protecting our allies,” the official told Reuters. “The initial assessment is that Germany would very likely not have a problem with a THAAD deployment.”