rick rozoff

Japan, South Korea: NATO firms up eastern outposts
Rick Rozoff, AntiBellum, Jan 24 2023

NATO cements ties with South Korea, Japan as security challenges mount
South China Morning Post, Jan 24 2023

NATO chief’s visits to Seoul and Tokyo next week reflect the greater emphasis the transatlantic partnership is putting on East Asia, an analyst said. Stoltenberg is set to visit South Korea and Japan from Monday to reinforce the transatlantic security alliance’s ties with its key partners in the region. The war in Ukraine will also be high on the agenda, with Tokyo and Seoul likely to confirm the release of additional non-lethal equipment for Kyiv. Previously, the two governments provided battlefield medical supplies, body armour, helmets, generators and communications equipment. South Korea, for example, recently signed an agreement with Poland to provide heavy tanks, self-propelled artillery and fighter trainer aircraft, which frees up Warsaw to release its own equipment to Ukraine. While Japan is presently constrained by self-imposed rules that mean it cannot send offensive weapons to a country involved in a conflict, analysts point out that there is growing support – both politically and among the public – for the rule to be lifted in the future. Stoltenberg is expected to arrive in Seoul on Sunday and will hold talks with South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol, Foreign Minister Park Jin and Defence Minister Lee Jong-sup before travelling to Tokyo for discussions with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida. An analyst with the National Institute of Defence Studies in Tokyo said: “NATO has in recent months been placing greater emphasis on deepening and broadening cooperation with nations in East Asia, but particularly Japan and South Korea. For NATO and Stoltenberg, the idea is to highlight that the Ukraine crisis is not a European crisis but a global crisis and a challenge to the rules-based order. And that is why they are keen for other countries, particularly Japan, to get involved and offer support.”

Opening the floodgates: US to send Abrams main battle tanks to Ukraine – CNN
Rick Rozoff, AntiBellum, Jan 24 2023

US finalizing plans to send approximately 30 Abrams tanks to Ukraine, two US officials say
CNN, Jan 24 2023

The US is finalizing plans to send approximately 30 Abrams tanks to Ukraine, two US officials familiar with the deliberations told CNN. The Biden administration announcement to send the US-made tanks could come as early as this week. The US will also send a small number of recovery vehicles. Recovery vehicles are tracked vehicles used to assist in the repair of tanks on the battlefield or the removal from the battlefield for service and maintenance in a different location. The pending announcement appears to break a diplomatic logjam with Germany about the provision of tanks to Ukraine. German officials had openly stated that they would only send their Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine if the US sent the M-1 Abrams tank. The US decision to provide Abrams tanks to Ukraine is an abrupt about-face from its stated position, one that allows Germany to send its tanks and to clear the way for the approval of other European countries to send in more of the German-made Leopard 2 tanks as well.

NATO’s eastern flank: Patriot missile batteries headed to Poland
Rick Rozoff, AntiBellum, Jan 24 2023

Poland prepares for arrival of Patriot air defence system from Germany: deputy PM
Polish Radio, Jan 23 2023

A deputy prime minister has said that Poland is preparing for the arrival and installation of a Patriot air defence system from Germany. Mariusz Błaszczak made the announcement at a news conference in the western Polish city of Poznań on Monday. The German army was due to start the transfer of two Patriot batteries to Poland on Monday. Designed to strengthen NATO’s eastern flank, the batteries will be stationed in Poland’s eastern Lubelskie province, some 60 kilometres from the Ukrainian border. German soldiers tasked with installing the batteries in Poland have already been deployed near the eastern town of Zamość. In all, Berlin has promised to supply Poland with three batteries of the Patriot air defence system, officials said. Last week, Błaszczak told Polish Radio: “The Patriot batteries will be integrated into the Polish command system. Thanks to pressure from Poland, both Germany and the US have committed to sending the Patriot system to Ukraine. We are deeply convinced that the same will be the case with Leopard tanks.”

NATO unity: Poland pressures Germany to send tanks to Ukraine
Rick Rozoff, AntiBellum, Jan 24 2023

Poland requests German permission to send tanks to Ukraine: deputy PM
Polish Radio, Jan 24 2023

A Polish deputy prime minister has said that Germany has received an official request from Poland to re-export Leopard 2 tanks to war-torn Ukraine. Mariusz Błaszczak made the announcement on Twitter on Tuesday. The deputy prime minister, who is also Poland’s defence minister, wrote: “The Germans have already received our request for permission to transfer Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine. I also appeal to the German side to join the coalition of countries supporting Ukraine with Leopard 2 tanks. This is our common cause, because the security of the whole of Europe is at stake.” On Sunday, German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said Berlin would not stand in Poland’s way if Warsaw asked for permission to send Leopard tanks to Ukraine. On Monday, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said Germany was not blocking the export of the tanks. German Defence Minister Boris Pistorius said on Tuesday that there was no disunity among NATO allies about providing heavy battle tanks to Ukraine, adding that the German government would “act quickly” if there was a positive decision to do so. Poland, Finland and other countries have offered to provide German-made Leopard tanks.

Black Sea: US deploys airborne, mountain troops to Romania
Rick Rozoff, AntiBellum, Jan 24 2023

Soldiers from 101st Airborne, 10th Mountain divisions expected to deploy to Romania
Stars and Stripes, Jan 23 2023

Army units are gearing up for a potential deployment to Europe in the Black Sea region. Elements from the 101st Airborne Division’s 1st Brigade Combat Team and the 10th Mountain Division headquarters are preparing for the mission, the Army said in a statement Saturday. The Army statement did not specify where the units are going, but a military official told Stars and Stripes the soldiers are expected to backfill a 101st Airborne Division headquarters and a subordinate brigade deployed to Romania since the summer. The 101st units were ordered to Romania in June and operate mostly out of Mihail Kogalniceanu Air Base, which serves as a hub for the Army in the Black Sea region. During their time in Romania and other locations around Europe, 101st soldiers have been tasked with monitoring events in Ukraine…while incorporating lessons from the war into how American ground forces train.

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