WASHINGTON — Spurred on by President Donald Trump’s demand to pull troops out of Germany, the U.S. will bring about 6,400 forces home and shift about 5,400 to other countries in Europe, U.S. defense officials said Wednesday, detailing a Pentagon plan that will cost billions of dollars and take years to complete.
“The current EUCOM plan will reposition approximately 11,900 military personnel from Germany, from roughly 36,000 down to 24,000, in a manner that will strengthen NATO, enhance the deterrence of Russia, and meet the other principles I set forth,” Secretary of Defense Mark Esper told reporters, referring to U.S. European Command which oversees U.S. military mission on the continent.
The decision fulfills Trump’s announced desire to withdraw troops from Germany, at least in part due to its failure to spend enough on defense.
Trump has frequently dressed down NATO counterparts and threatened to reduce U.S. military support if allies do not increase spending. Last year while…