US to Increase Armored Brigades in Eastern Europe

Pentagon to Roll Back 2012 Obama Cuts in Early 2017

In 2012, the Obama Administration cut a pair of army brigades from Europe, in an effort to save money and to shift forces to other more combat–heavy areas. In early 2017, after Obama leaves office, the brigades will return.

The Pentagon is now saying they intend to send rotations of armored combat brigades to Eastern Europe, bringing the continued presence of combat forces back to where it was in 2011.

NATO Supreme Commander Gen. Philip Breedlove touted the deployments, claiming they are a “strong and balanced” response to Russia’s “aggression.” Breedlove is among several NATO officials who have been claiming Russia might invade Eastern Europe, and have been pushing ever-more US troops for the region.

The deployment isn’t a total rollback to the 2011 presence, as the previous US troops were largely in Germany, and the new ones will be rotating around Poland and the Baltic states, with an eye toward keeping them along the Russian border.

In recent military budgets, the US has been adding more and more troops to the Russian frontier, even though the predictions of a Russian invasion never panned out, and there are no signs they are slowing down those deployments.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.