Fears of an invasion of Ukraine by Russia remain high. NATO is putting its troops on alert and increasing its presence on the external borders.
- The location between Russia* and Ukraine on the border between the two countries remains tense.
- Russia’s President Wladimir Putin* Demands security guarantees from NATO and accuses it of escalating the situation with its military presence on the Russian borders.
- the USA* increase their troop presence in Eastern Europe. US President Joe Biden* puts around 8,500 soldiers on alert.
- The news situation on the Ukraine conflict in the news ticker.
+++ Update, 01/25/2022, 6:05 a.m.: NATO troops in Eastern Europe have long been on alert due to the Ukraine crisis. The US increased its military presence in the Eastern European member states of the defense alliance by 8,500 soldiers. But according to a report in the New York Times, this could be just the beginning.
As the newspaper reports, US President Joe Biden discussed the situation on the Ukrainian border in the Ministry of Defense. The generals assured him that the Pentagon could send troops with up to 50,000 soldiers to neighboring NATO member states within a short period of time. – in addition to the approximately 10,000 NATO soldiers already deployed in countries close to Russia such as Poland, Romania and the Turkey* are stationed. There are also around 150 American military advisers in Ukraine itself.
However, should Russia actually start an attack on Ukraine, the NATO troops stationed up to now could hardly be stopped by the Russian army. The formations that have gathered on the border with Ukraine should already be up to 100,000 strong. “It’s probably too little too late to deter Putin,” Jim Townsend, a NATO adviser to President Barack Obama’s administration, told the New York Times.
Ukraine crisis: USA expect attack before spring – and put armed forces on increased readiness
+++ 9.12 p.m.: According to the Department of Defense, the US government has put around 8,500 soldiers in the United States on increased standby because of the Ukraine crisis. Ministry spokesman John Kirby emphasized on Monday, however, that a decision on moving these troops to Europe had not yet been made. The relevant units had been put on increased readiness on the instructions of US President Joe Biden and on the recommendation of Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin.
“As such, they are prepared to respond to a range of contingencies, including supporting the NATO Response Force should it activate,” Kirby said. NATO decides whether to activate this “NATO Response Force” (NRF). In connection with the increased willingness, Kirby spoke of “reinsurance for our NATO allies”.
USA anticipate attack before spring – NATO increases troop presence
Update from Monday, January 24th, 2022, 1:25 p.m.: Because of the tensions with Russia, NATO is increasing its military presence in Eastern Europe: The alliance said a number of member states want to send additional combat aircraft and naval vessels to the Baltic Sea and Eastern European countries such as Lithuania, Romania and Bulgaria. NATO said allies are readying their troops and stepping up deterrence and defense measures “while Russia continues its military build-up in and around Ukraine.”
Specifically, NATO named Denmark, Spain, France and the Netherlands. According to the information, Denmark is sending a frigate to the Baltic Sea and four F-16 fighter jets to Lithuania. Spain is providing ships for the NATO naval forces and is considering sending fighter jets to Bulgaria.
France has agreed to send NATO-led troops to Romania, NATO said. The Netherlands also sent two F-35 fighter jets to Bulgaria from April and put a ship and land-based units on standby for the NATO NRF intervention force.
Ukraine conflict: USA expects Russia to attack before spring because of “Rasputitsa”.
First report from 01/24/2022: Kiev/Washington – Tensions between Ukraine and Russia continue. Meanwhile, NATO has announced that it intends to increase its military presence in Eastern Europe. Meanwhile, US media are concerned and discussing the risk of Russia invading Ukraine. As CNN reports, an invasion in the spring is less risky than in the winter.
This is related to the soil conditions in the region: the frosty soil in winter would suit Russian troops. According to the argument, the ground conditions already prevented Napoleon and Hitler from invading Russia. The soil in spring even has its own name: Rasputitsa, or “season of bad roads”. According to the New York Times, which quotes US security strategists, muddy ground would benefit Ukraine in the event of an invasion. Only last week, however, did Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov again deny wanting to invade Ukraine. Instead, he called for “security guarantees” from NATO, which NATO does not want to fulfill.*
Russian troop deployment: US media concerned about Ukraine conflict
The Washington Post writes that the Russian “dictator” Vladimir Putin makes no secret of his desire for an empire like the former USSR. One should not shy away from harsh sanctions. German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock*(Greens)* had announced a resolute stance on the part of the EU towards Russia and emphasized a willingness to engage in dialogue with Russia. Germany rejects German arms deliveries to Ukraine and instead relies on sanctions.
In view of the tense situation, the US government is reducing its embassy presence in Kiev. The US State Department announced that employees who were not immediately required to leave the country voluntarily had been approved because of the ongoing threat from Russian military action. Family members of diplomats have been asked to leave Ukraine.
Ukraine calls cuts in US embassy staff ‘excessive caution’
Ukraine has reacted to the withdrawal of US embassy staff from Kiev: The reduction in embassy staff in Kiev was described as “excessive caution” by the USA. “We consider such a step by the American side to be premature,” the State Department said on Monday (January 24, 2022). The security situation has “not fundamentally changed”. The threat from Russia has been constant since 2014, the Foreign Ministry said. Russian troops near the state border had already deployed in April 2021.
Ukraine conflict: USA reduces embassy staff due to tense situation on the border with Russia
In view of the tense situation, the US government is reducing its embassy presence in Kiev. Family members of diplomats have been asked to leave Ukraine. The US State Department spoke of a voluntary departure of employees who are not immediately needed. With a massive Russian troop build-up near the border with Ukraine, there are fears in the West that Russia may be planning an invasion of Ukraine. Moscow rejects this and demands security guarantees from the USA and NATO.
In contrast to the USA, the European Union currently sees no reason to ask embassy staff and family members of diplomats to leave Ukraine. “I don’t think we have to dramatize,” said EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell on Monday (January 24, 2022) on the sidelines of a meeting of EU foreign ministers in Brussels. As long as negotiations with Russia are still going on, he doesn’t think it’s necessary to leave Ukraine.
EU does not want to withdraw embassy staff from Ukraine for the time being
At the same time, Borrell admitted that the assessment of the situation could change. Antony Blinken, US Secretary of State under US President Joe Biden, who was to be connected to the EU meeting via video conference, would explain the US announcement, said the Spaniard.
The US State Department announced that employees who were not immediately required to leave the country voluntarily because of the ongoing threat from Russian military action had been approved. Family members of US diplomats have been asked to leave Ukraine. From NATO and the G7 countries were warned in advance of the danger of war.*
NATO: Russian troop deployment causes tensions
The EU representation in Ukraine is located in the center of the capital Kiev. It is currently headed by Estonian diplomat Matti Maasikas. With a massive Russian troop buildup near Ukraine, there are fears in the West that Russian leader Vladimir Putin may be planning an invasion of Ukraine. However, it is also considered possible that fears are only being stirred up in order to persuade the NATO states to make concessions when demands for new security guarantees are made. It is Russia’s declared goal, for example, that NATO refrain from further eastward expansion and withdraw its armed forces from eastern alliance states. NATO and the EU reject these demands as unacceptable. (dpa/afp) *fr.de is an offer from IPPEN.MEDIA.