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Yankees they must go the house

Yet another example of trumpeted Trump populist announcements and reality parting company.

'The US Army and the German Armed Forces are pressing ahead with a joint, multi-year construction project in the Bavarian training area of Grafenwöhr.

'The project, which officials estimate will cost 119 million euros or around 141 million US dollars, will build 25 buildings on nearly 100 acres of land in part of the training area known as Camp Normandy, the German military said in a statement.

'The new building will replace “old and shabby” buildings in which German troops were housed, announced the news agency Onetz.de.

'The new buildings will also help address the shortage of housing that is likely to arise if the US pursues plans to increase troop rotation and allocations to Grafenwohr, which is not one of the US military facilities earmarked for closing or reducing the armed forces When the Pentagon revealed plans in July to withdraw nearly 12,000 soldiers from Germany.

'The drawdown was called for by President Donald Trump, who has long ridiculed Germany as criminal of its NATO defense spending commitments.

'In addition to the additional American troops, around 1,400 German troops are expected to be stationed in Grafenwoehr, creating the potential for a housing shortage, said Lieutenant Colonel Florian Rommel, commander of the German training area at the site.

'Plans for the project are expected to be presented next month and construction could begin early next year, Rommel said.

'Military personnel from allied and partner countries train in Grafenwöhr, the largest and most modern permanent training area for the army in Europe.'


 
We'll all have to wait and see where this one leads.

'President-elect Joe Biden is expected to kill the Trump administration’s plan to withdraw U.S. forces from Germany soon after taking office in January, in a move that would reset the NATO alliance after four years of tension with Washington, analysts said.

“I think that’ll be one of the most significant and quickest national security policy reversals come January 20, 2021,” said John R. Deni, a professor at the U.S. Army War College.

'The proposal by President Donald Trump to pull some 12,000 troops out of Germany, moving some elsewhere in Europe and others to the U.S., was “short-sighted,” “fiscally irresponsible” and likely to be ineffective at getting Germany to pay more for its defense — the reason cited by Trump for calling for the troops to be relocated, Deni said.

'A timeline for putting the plan into action was still in the works as U.S. European Command, itself slated to relocate from Germany to Belgium under the initiative, hashes out details.

'But it could all be moot now, analysts said.

“One of the biggest changes in foreign policy that Joe Biden will make as president will be in U.S. policy on NATO,” said Jorge Benitez, a NATO expert with the Washington-based Atlantic Council.

“The Biden administration will reset and revive relations with our NATO allies,” he said.

'Michele Flournoy, considered the front-runner to serve as defense secretary in a Biden presidency, has said Trump’s plan to pull thousands of troops out of Germany would cost more to implement than leaving them where they are.”


 

Zhopa

War Hero
We'll all have to wait and see where this one leads.

Unfortunately yes - whether the common sense comments in the piece from people who have known all along what a terrible idea this was (along with the journo quoting them) will actually turn into a sensible decision, plus whether DoD and EUCOM can continue to stall for the next two months while Trump does as much damage as possible before leaving.
 
Unfortunately yes - whether the common sense comments in the piece from people who have known all along what a terrible idea this was (along with the journo quoting them) will actually turn into a sensible decision, plus whether DoD and EUCOM can continue to stall for the next two months while Trump does as much damage as possible before leaving.

Why is it a terrible idea, is there a US strategic reason for being in Germany and not other NATO countries in the Europe?
 

Zhopa

War Hero
Why is it a terrible idea, is there a US strategic reason for being in Germany and not other NATO countries in the Europe?

Well, to put it in a nutshell -

  • EUCOM HQ, which as you suggest could in theory be anywhere in Europe, is firmly established in Germany along with its infrastructure, permanent premises, staff, families, support structure etc. etc. Same for USAREUR. You could move it, but it would cause immense disruption and enormous cost for no practical benefit - even if there were anywhere for it to go, which there wasn't. (DoD when scrambling for ways to make Trump's whim work latched on to moving it to somewhere near SHAPE, which threw up even more difficulties.)

  • Same as above applies to AFRICOM, only nobody had the first clue where it could possibly have gone. Certainly not actually Africa...

  • That leaves the actual combat elements currently based in Germany. Bits of USAFE and 2CR have been slated to move to make up the numbers ordered to be drawn down. The problem with that was that they, too, could have gone somewhere sensible in Europe - but to make the plan work they had to be pulled back to the US instead and made rotational, effectively removing them from the defence of Europe if something happens at the wrong time in the rotation cycle.

  • The best case scenario was that the numbers pulled from Germany could have been added to the ones supposed to be forward deployed to Poland... but that can't happen under a C-in-C who will do anything possible to avoid annoying Putin.
 
Well, to put it in a nutshell -

  • EUCOM HQ, which as you suggest could in theory be anywhere in Europe, is firmly established in Germany along with its infrastructure, permanent premises, staff, families, support structure etc. etc. Same for USAREUR. You could move it, but it would cause immense disruption and enormous cost for no practical benefit - even if there were anywhere for it to go, which there wasn't. (DoD when scrambling for ways to make Trump's whim work latched on to moving it to somewhere near SHAPE, which threw up even more difficulties.)

  • Same as above applies to AFRICOM, only nobody had the first clue where it could possibly have gone. Certainly not actually Africa...

  • That leaves the actual combat elements currently based in Germany. Bits of USAFE and 2CR have been slated to move to make up the numbers ordered to be drawn down. The problem with that was that they, too, could have gone somewhere sensible in Europe - but to make the plan work they had to be pulled back to the US instead and made rotational, effectively removing them from the defence of Europe if something happens at the wrong time in the rotation cycle.

  • The best case scenario was that the numbers pulled from Germany could have been added to the ones supposed to be forward deployed to Poland... but that can't happen under a C-in-C who will do anything possible to avoid annoying Putin.

In theory the British army could have stayed in Germany using the same argument.

Also the military move alot normally so staff/families moving isnt that important.

Nothing of what you say seem to be of a major strategic reason (A few minor ones possibly) for the USA

From what I understand of it, there were still going to be tens of thousands of Americans service personnel in Germany.

Other nations are free to fill in any gaps if they wish.
 
Biden is proving he can be spiteful through the back door while preaching unity he spread as much disunity as possible.

Yes, terrible that a new President might overturn the decisions of his predecessor, or when your own party does it before you're even out the door.:D

'Language aimed at constraining President Trump’s ability to withdraw thousands of U.S. troops from Germany has made it in the compromise version of the annual defense policy bill, three House aides familiar with the bill told The Hill.

“There is language that prevents reduction in the number of U.S. forces stationed in Germany below 34,500 until 120 days after the secretary of Defense submits an assessment and planning regarding the implications for allies, costs, military families, deterrence and other key issues,” one of the aides said. The compromise bill also “expresses the sense of Congress emphasizing the value of U.S. forces in Germany and the U.S-German alliance,” the aide added.

'The issue could become moot after President-elect Joe Biden takes office in January. Biden’s advisers have said he will review Trump’s plan, and given his pledge to restore traditional U.S. alliances, he is widely expected to kill the troop drawdown. But the language’s inclusion in the compromise National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) is yet another bipartisan rebuke of Trump in his final weeks in office.

'Language on Trump’s Germany withdrawal was included in the version of the NDAA the House passed in July after being approved by the House Armed Services Committee in a bipartisan 49-7 vote. The amendment was sponsored by Reps. Ruben Gallego (D-Ariz.) and Don Bacon (R-Neb.).

'The Senate did not have a similar provision in its bill, but there was bipartisan opposition to Trump’s plan in both chambers of Congress. Still, Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman James Inhofe (R-Okla.) supports Trump’s drawdown, which raised questions about whether the language would survive negotiations on the final bill.'


Compromise defense bill offers rebuke of Trump's Germany drawdown
 
^Oh no question about that. Point is Trumps draw down equated directly with European countries spending more And a shift of balance to China. How that will work out I have no idea but it does strike me that EUrope will take that as another defence dividend. It may also weaken Biden in some respects, the Chinese will not take him seriously. From my perspective that’s what drove the NATO / EU defence force argument. Perhaps a by product will be the end of that proposition. I mean even if you don’t like Trump or his antics he’s given those issues a bloody good shake up, even if the swamp has won.
 

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