President Biden on Thursday directed an additional 7,000 troops to deploy to Germany to help bolster NATO’s defenses as Russia forges ahead with its military incursion against Ukraine. 

Earlier on Thursday, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg announced that the alliance activated its defense plans at the request of Gen. Tod Wolters, who leads U.S. European Command. 

Stoltenberg didn’t elaborate on specifics, but said they cover the eastern part of the alliance and give its military commanders more authorities within guidelines to deploy forces if needed.

“Now, I’m authorizing additional U.S. force capabilities to deploy to Germany as part of NATO’s response, including some the U.S.-based forces that the Department of Defense placed on standby weeks ago,” Biden said in remarks at the White House.

A senior defense official later said the troops were comprised of an armored brigade combat team with associated capabilities and enablers. The troops are expected to depart in the coming days.

While Biden has said no U.S. forces would be deployed directly to Ukraine, his administration has been working to bolster NATO’s defense capabilities.

In late January, the Pentagon put 8,500 troops on heightened alert to deploy should NATO activate its response force, a multinational alliance of more than 40,000 troops that can deploy on short notice.

Over the past month, it has deployed and repositioned more than 6,000 troops to Poland, Romania, Germany and the Baltics.

Biden said he has spoken with Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Mark Milley about “additional moves should become necessary to protect our NATO allies and support the greatest military alliance in the history of world.” 

Tags Germany Joe Biden Lloyd Austin Mark Milley Russia Ukraine Ukraine invasion

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