by Sean Kay
America will not just "walk away" from its NATO allies. Rather, the challenge is to create new incentives for European members to assume lead responsibility for their own security. The strategic guidance asserts that the United States will "maintain our Article 5 commitments to allied security and promote enhanced capacity and interoperability for coalition operations. In this resource-constrained era, we will also work with NATO allies to develop a "Smart Defense" approach to pool, share, and specialize capabilities as needed to meet 21st century challenges."
Regarding the removal of US troops from Europe as part of the "new NATO" construct, if the number of US troops shifts from a few thousand to possibly a few hundred (possibly using the "lily-pad" concept of forward positioned support forces), would it make sense, in light of ongoing events, to now move these few hundred to eastern Europe (Poland, Baltic region) to bolster their confidence in US resolve to their defence and move EUCOM not to the US but to either the UK (long our staunchest European ally) or Poland, likely the next "strong" power in Central Europe?