Tag Archives: troops

The New Zealand team playing Australia | Instant News

FILE PHOTOS: Steve Hansen (L), Grant Fox and Ian Foster (R) view before the All Blacks’ Rugby Championship match against the South African Springboks at Westpac Stadium in Wellington, 13 September 2014. REUTERS / Anthony Phelps

WELLINGTON (Reuters) – All Blacks coach Ian Foster named the following teams who will face Australia in their Bledisloe Cup first leg at Wellington Regional Stadium on Sunday:

New Zealand: 15-Beauden Barrett, 14-Jordie Barrett, 13-Rieko Ioane, 12-Jack Goodhue, 11-George Bridge, 10-Richie Mo’unga, 9-Aaron Smith, 8-Ardie Savea, 7-Sam Cane ( captain), 6-Shannon Frizell, 5-Sam Whitelock, 4-Patrick Tuipulotu, 3-Ofa Tuungafasi, 2-Codie Taylor, 1-Joe Moody

Substitutes: 16-Dane Coles, 17-Karl Tu’inukuafe, 18-Nepo Laulala, 19-Tupou Vaa’i, 20-Hoskins Sotutu, 21-TJ Perenara, 22-Anton Lienert-Brown, 23-Caleb Clarke

Reporting by Greg Stutchbury; Edited by Ed Osmond


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Durbin Discusses Withdrawal of Troops from Germany, Covid-19 Testing with the Minister of Defense | Instant News

Durbin Discusses Withdrawal of Troops from Germany, Testing Covid-19 with the Minister of Defense | RiverBender.com


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German Bundeswehr to help German countries after US withdrawal News | DW | Instant News

Germany must do more for its own security, Defense Minister Annagret Kramp-Karrenbauer said as The US plan to drastically cut off the presence of its troops in a European country.

“We consider the interests of the European Union and Germany,” Kramp-Karrenbauer said on Friday. “It is also true that the good life in Germany and Europe increasingly depends on how we ensure our own security.”

Earlier this week, the US sketched a plan to approach 11,900 troops, or nearly a third of its total contingent in Germany, abroad. That step done on the orders of President Donald Trump, which on Wednesday said the US withdrew because Germany “did not pay their bills” for defense, alluded to Berlin’s failure to meet NATO guidelines on military spending.

While NATO asked its members to invest 2% of their GDP into defense, German military spending was around 1.38% of GDP last year. Trump described Germany as a “delinquent”.

NATO statistics show that in 2019 out of 28 members of the alliance, only the US, Greece, Estonia, Britain, Romania, Poland and Lativa spending more than 2% of GDP on defense spending.

Read more: SIPRI: Germany significantly increases military spending

German officials criticize the cuts in US forces and Trump’s tone. In addition to security concerns, the withdrawal is expected to hit the economies of the cities where troops are located, because many Germans work as civilian staff and contractors for US forces and rely on American soldiers as customers for their business.

Bundeswehr to save?

On Friday, Defense Minister Annagret Kramp-Karrenbauer said he would hold talks after the summer holidays with leaders of the affected German states to discuss “how the Bundeswehr can support the affected areas.” He described the US withdrawal as “regrettable.” It was not immediately clear how the German military would try to fill the gap left by the US departure.

German lawmaker and senior defense official Thomas Silberhorn told DW that US forces had “extraordinary work in Germany and Europe” in the previous decades.

Read more: Germany urges continued US dialogue after withdrawal

Germany is concerned “not only about withdrawing troops, but about the reasons,” Silberhorn told DW Washington correspondent Ines Pohl.

Silberhorn said, “We understand his argument, Europeans and especially Germans, must do more for security in Europe. But we have done many things.”

Berlin must “continue the trustful dialogue at a higher level” with Washington, he added.

dj / sms (dpa, AFP, Reuters)


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Germany urges resumption of US dialogue after troop withdrawals News | DW | Instant News

The German government has urged to continue an “eye” dialogue with Washington announced the withdrawal of US troops from the country.

“We must continue the trustful dialogue at a higher level,” Thomas Silberhorn, a senior member of the German Defense Ministry, told DW.

“For decades, US forces have done extraordinary work in Germany and Europe,” Silberhorn said, adding that now it is “important to get a clear strategic approach to the question of readjusting US forces not only in Germany but throughout Europe.”

Read more: The US Military in Germany: What you need to know

The US announced plans this week to attract 11,900 military personnel from Germany – dropped to 24,000 from 36,000. A number of troops were arranged to go to Italy. And, in a big step, the headquarters of the US European Command and the European Special Operations Command will be moved from Stuttgart, Germany to Belgium. Some soldiers may also be moved to Poland and the Baltic countries.

This is one of the largest rearrangements of troops in Germany since the Cold War.

Call for clarification

Silberhorn said Germany was concerned “not only about withdrawing troops, but about the reasons.”

US President Donald Trump announced a decline last month amid long-term strife with Germany over its defense spending, which fell below the NATO target of 2% of gross domestic product.

Silberhorn said that “we understand his argument, Europeans and especially Germans, must do more for security in Europe. But we have done many things.”

US Defense Secretary Mark Esper also said the move, which would cost billions of dollars, was part of Washington’s new military strategy against Russia. “We are following the eastern boundary, where our latest allies are,” Esper said.

Read more: Withdrawal of troops from Germany ‘gifts to the Kremlin’

Criticism of decisions has said that moving troops from Germany will be welcomed by Moscow. However, Silberhorn doubted the US decision would play in the hands of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

“This is a shift towards the south and east sides of NATO. Until 1990, it made sense to keep US forces close to the eastern border of Germany,” he said. “Now, NATO has been enlarged, boundaries are shifting eastward.”

Thomas Silberhorn, German Politician, State Secretary of the German Ministry of Defense in Washington, was speaking with DW Ines Pohl.


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Former US commander: Withdrawal of troops from Germany ′ gifts to the Kremlin ′ | Germany | News and in-depth reporting from Berlin and surroundings | DW | Instant News

On Wednesday, US Defense Secretary Mark Esper announced plans to withdraw around 11,800 American military personnel from bases in Germany. Around 5,400 troops will be sent to other European countries, while more than 6,000 will return.

Lieutenant General Ben Hodges is a retired US Army officer who led the European United States Army from November 2014 to December 2017. After leaving the military, he became Chair of Pershing in Strategic Studies at the Center for European Policy Analysis, based in Washington, DC.

He spoke with the Washington DW Bureau Chief, Ines Pohl, about the damage done by troop withdrawals to US-German relations and US military readiness in Europe.

DW: What does withdrawal mean for the safety of the United States?

Hodges: It hurts us because it further damages relationships with our most important allies. And it’s more in the way that this is done according to specifications. The timeline for things like this will usually take years.

It takes a long time for those things to really happen – if they do at all. But the damage to the relationship was done. And for me that is the most unfortunate part.

Lieutenant General Ben Hodges said damage had occurred to US-German relations, even if the withdrawal of troops was not continued

Germany is our most important ally in Europe. This gives us a platform to implement our own national security strategies in Africa, in Europe and in Eurasia. That is the ally that we need most to work together. The administration is doing this in a way that damages trust.

From a military point of view, is it necessary to have so many troops in Germany?

We have very few troops in Germany. 35,000 is not even half the size of the stadium where Bayern Munich plays soccer. Most of them are people who work in headquarters or logistics or air defense or communication. It’s just not many people.

So troops are not needed from a military point of view?

Withdrawal removes capabilities that exist in Germany and helps the United States. The troops were not there to guard the Germans, they were stationed there for us. Germany is a platform that allows us to carry out rapid strengthening in Eastern Europe, for example, as well as other places.

That’s why relations with Germany are very important. And if you start distancing capabilities from Germany, where we have good infrastructure, it will be difficult to maintain the same level of readiness. If you are moving troops to Italy, for example, the infrastructure is not there. They have to spend billions of dollars expanding barracks.

Republican Senator Mitt Romney and others call this a gift to Russia. Do you agree with that?

This is a complete gift for the Kremlin. A 30% reduction in US capability in Germany, further disruption and damage to our most important relations and Russia has not produced this.

I mean, they are as aggressive as in the Black Sea, they continue to occupy Crimea, they kill Ukraine every week. They did nothing to get a reduction in US capability in Europe.

So why did President Trump do this?

I can only speculate. I always believe that this is a political decision that is not based on any strategic analysis.

He confirmed this step by Germany not paying enough into the NATO budget.

I believe that this is the principle motivation. Of course, almost everyone agrees that Germany must spend more on its own defense. Every president has it.

But the president’s decision to reduce what we have in Germany is almost a third based on his frustration that he does not spend 2% of GDP on defense.

Ironically, Italy and Belgium are also well below 2%, and they are now in line to receive troops. So there is no consistency in this decision.

Less than 100 days until election day. How much can President Trump really do until then?

Now, from what we hear today, some movements will begin in a few weeks. There is no really substantial part that can be moved for months.

President Trump has just announced that he wants to send retired US Army Colonel Douglas Macgregor as US ambassador to Germany. How does this fit into the picture?

He was entirely in the same camp as former Ambassador Richard Grenell and the White House in terms of reducing military capabilities in Germany. Clearly, the White House will not choose someone who will not run the same policy.

It is unfortunate that for our most important ally, we did not elect a well-known and well-known ambassador, as Germany did. [former State Secretary] Emily Haber to Washington. We must look for one of our most prominent and best diplomats to ensure relations with our most important allies.


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