From April to May 2020, a military exercise “Defender Europe 20” will be held in six European countries. This will be the third largest exercise organized by NATO in Europe since the end of the Cold War. Its size is sufficiently evident from the data that 20,000 US troops and 8,000 members of the armed forces from six European countries will participate in it, as well as tanks, military vehicles, planes, rockets, artillery units and other equipment. The US military has repeatedly said that the exercise will show that “the US commitment to NATO and defense of Europe remains steel.” Otherwise, one of the primary goals of the exercise is to deploy the US Armed Forces to Europe as quickly as possible in the event of a major-scale crisis and possible conflict with enemies.
It is envisaged that, before the exercise begins, the US Armed Forces and their technique will leave ports from four US states to reach Europe as soon as possible and be deployed in six European countries. Subsequently, the US Armed Forces will establish and deploy military bases in the territories of those states. For this operation to succeed, the logistical support of a large number of civilians and civilian services in all European countries in whose territories this exercise will take place will be required. Otherwise, it will also represent the largest transfer of US troops from the United States to Europe since the end of World War II. According to US General Sean Barnaby, Deputy Chief of Staff at the European Command of the US Armed Forces, the “Defender Europe 20” exercise is not aimed at any particular country, but rather at strengthening strategic readiness and practicing the speed of moving large forces from the US to Europe and locating them into different European countries.
The focus of this exercise will be in Poland, Georgia and the Baltic States. According to NATO, one of the intentions of the organizers of the exercise is to have a minimal impact on civilians’ lives in the countries where they will be held. To succeed in doing so, NATO troops and their techniques will move and deploy at their bases in the night. Otherwise, sending troops and equipment from America to Europe will begin as early as February. Most of this will involve ships and, to a lower extent, transport aircraft. It was also announced that as soon as the exercise was completed, the U.S. military and its vehicles, aircraft, vehicles and other military equipment would return from Europe to America. How Russia will react to this military exercise can only be assumed. So far, President Putin has on several occasions identified as a major strategic problem facing the strengthening of the US military presence in Europe and the Baltic States and the approaching of the NATO Pact to Russian borders.