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Rep. Gallego Statement on Trump’s Ill-Advised Plan to Withdraw U.S. Troops from Germany

July 29, 2020
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-AZ) issued the following statement in response to Defense Secretary Mark Esper’s announcement that the U.S. will move to withdraw nearly 12,000 troops from Germany.

“Our troops in Germany are not there to protect Germany. They are there to protect the United States, a task that they have done ably since 1945,” Rep. Gallego said. “They ensure we are ready to deploy around the world and provide excellent care to our wounded. And yes, they’re there to provide a deterrent to Russia and a Russian president who only understands force.

“The plan announced today to reduce the U.S. military presence in Germany is dangerously short sighted. It’s more proof that Donald Trump and his enablers like Secretary Esper know the cost of everything and the value of nothing. It’s another sop to Putin by a weak President.

“In response, I will work with reasonable people in Congress of both parties to pass my amendment to the NDAA protecting our German posture and ensure that our defense against Russian strongmen survives the current occupant of the White House. And, starting now and continuing through the inauguration of the next President, to reverse the damage that President Trump continues to wreak on our country and the rest of the world, starting with our invaluable friend and ally Germany.”

Earlier this month, the House of Representatives passed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), including an amendment introduced by Rep. Ruben Gallego that would protect U.S. troop levels and infrastructure in Germany and Europe. The amendment would prevent a reduction in troop levels in the region below June levels unless the Secretary of Defense and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff certify that such a reduction is in the national security interest of the United States and won’t undermine the security of the United States or its allies in the region. It also mandates that the Secretary consult with U.S. allies and partners on the topic, including all members of NATO.