Biden to Reduce US Troops in Middle East, Will Focus on China, Russia

Weapons deployments to be reduced in several countries

President Biden intends to reduce the number of US troops in the Middle East by several hundred. This includes removing antimissile batteries, and personnel assigned to them, as well as reducing the number of troops assigned to jets in the area. The largest number are to be removed from Saudi Arabia.

Officials say that the plan is to redeploy the troops away from the region and to operations focused on Russia and China. These sorts of pivots have been reportedly planned by the Pentagon for multiple administrations.

In the past, Asia Pivots and other such deployments have been hyped up but usually delayed by new Middle East operations. The US still found excuses to escalate presence around the Russian border, of course, but never cut troops in the Middle East to cover for that.

That officials are emphasizing this at all when in this case it only amounts to “several hundred” troops is unusual, as new deployments near either China or Russia of those sizes would barely register in the news, and cuts that will only be heard of again if the US changes its mind and keeps them in place.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of