About 3,800 soldiers based at Fort Stewart near Savannah are deploying to Europe amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine to “reassure NATO allies, deter further aggression against NATO member states and train with host-nation forces,” the U.S. military announced late Thursday.
The troops are primarily coming from the 3rd Infantry Division’s 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, nicknamed the “Raider Brigade.” They will deploy to Germany initially, according to the Pentagon, but they could move to other NATO countries.
“The Raider Brigade is trained and equipped to deter aggression and to reassure and defend our allies,” Col. Pete Moon, the brigade’s commander, said in a prepared statement.
They are among 12,000 U.S. troops who have been ordered to deploy to Europe, according to the Pentagon. They are joining 80,000 American service members already based in Europe.
Last week, an undisclosed number of Georgia National Guardsmen with the 165th Airlift Wing deployed to help with logistical support and military aid in Europe.
“The members of the 165th Airlift Wing are proven multi-domain capable airmen prepared to perform a diverse number of roles,” said Col. Robert Noren, the unit’s commander.
Russia has fired missiles at military bases and airfields around Kharkiv and Kyiv and sent its troops into Ukraine.
Speaking to reporters at the White House Thursday, President Joe Biden underscored that U.S. troops “will not be engaged in the conflict with Russia in Ukraine. Our forces are not going to Europe to fight in Ukraine but to defend our NATO allies and reassure those allies in the east.”
“As I made crystal clear,” he added, “the United States will defend every inch of NATO territory with the full force of American power. And the good news is: NATO is more united and more determined than ever.”