The presence of American troops no longer contributes to the security of Germany. This is the opinion of Klaus Ernst, a Bundestag deputy from the Left Party faction.
“I have a feeling that the American presence in Germany, especially with regard to nuclear weapons, is no longer necessary. I don’t think it significantly increases the security of the federal republic.”
On the eve, U.S. President Donald Trump threatened to reduce the number of U.S. troops in Germany to 25 thousand if Germany does not pay for their deployment.
The intention of Washington will be discussed by NATO defense ministers during a video conference on June 17-18, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said. He stressed that the presence of US and Canadian armed forces is necessary for both Europe and the USA and is important for the whole alliance.
“The presence of troops and military capabilities from the U.S. and Canada establishes a link between European defense capabilities and North American military capabilities, which is the foundation of the transatlantic alliance. But it is also beneficial for the U.S., because we need to remember that peace and stability in Europe is also important for North America,” said Stoltenberg.
According to the head of the White House, Berlin spends enough money on defense, as required by NATO alliance.
At the same time on June 5, the media reported that Trump had already ordered the Ministry of Defense to reduce the number of the American contingent in Germany and by September to withdraw 9.5 thousand troops out of almost 35 thousand located in Germany.
Republicans called on Trump to reject this decision, noting that such a step would allegedly strengthen Russia’s position to the detriment of the U.S. interests.
Against this background, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas called the relations between Berlin and Washington difficult. He stressed that Berlin had “taken note” of the possible withdrawal.