Trump Rapidly Expands Cold War-Era Footprint In Europe To Counter Russia

Does ‘America first’ really mean ‘Europe first’ in the preparation for war with Russia? 

At the expense of the American taxpayer, the Trump administration wants to restore the Cold War-era footprint in Europethrough massive investments in military infrastructure to deter Russian aggression and reinforce allies.

It is odd that the administration wants to spend massive amounts of money on infrastructure projects in Europe, but has yet to fix America’s crippling D- infrastructure. Somehow, the priorities of this administration of ‘America first’ have been lost through the alignment with the military-industrial-complex and Washington’s warmongers.

The Trump administration asked for $828 million in 2019 to expand and upgrade military infrastructure projects throughout Europe as part of a continuous fearmongering campaign against Russia to allocate more money to defense. Nearly half of that construction funding would go towards U.S. Air Force projects.

The request for additional funding would more than double the military’s infrastructure projects under the European Deterrence Initiative (EDI), from the 2018 request, when just a few years ago, the Pentagon was scaling back its Cold War-era footprint in Europe.

According to Defense News, the EDI request increased to $6.5 billion from $4.8 billion in 2018, military construction projects in the EDI request jumped from $338 million in 2018, while pre-positioning funds soared from $2.2 billion to $3.2 billion.

The Air Force would spend roughly $368.6 million to pre-position equipment and $363.8 million for military construction projects. While the spending is almost equal to what was expensed in fiscal 2018, it is a huge jump from 2017, when the Air Force was only allotted $31.2 million in pre-positioning funds and $85.4 million for military construction.

What is the reasoning behind the increased military infrastructure spending in Europe?

Well, it is the idea if Russia invaded a NATO ally — the U.S. Air Force will have the tools to instantly respond to the threat, supported by upgraded airfields to reload munitions, higher capacity refueling stations, and more engineering bays to service damaged aircraft.

Areas of focus include Air Force assets in NATO countries, like Germany and the United Kingdom, and countries in Central and Eastern Europe.

Defense News notes that the Trump administration is not planning on constructing new airbases in former Soviet bloc countries, but it is upgrading existing infrastructure to ensure its fifth-generation fighter jets, drones, and other aircraft are adequately prepared for the next round of hybrid wars.

“It makes it easier to reinforce [allies] in a crisis,” said Mark Cancian, a retired Marine Corps officer and senior international security adviser with the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

“The munitions, the taxiways and refueling points makes it much easier to move in there in an emergency,” Cancian added.

During congressional testimony in March, U.S. European Command chief Gen. Curtis Scaparrotti confirmed the plans of a rapid military infrastructure program in Europe. He told U.S. lawmakers that the FY’18 and FY’19 budget requests would “enable the rapid reception of fourth- and fifth-generation fighters, close-air support, bombers and air mobility aircraft in a contingency.”

Near the Russian border in Estonia, the 2018 budget request has funded significant upgrades for refueling infrastructure and a fighter aircraft parking and taxiway at Amari Air Base. The Trump administration wants more Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II, General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon, Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor, and Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II aircraft stationed at Amari Air Base to counter Russia. The FY’19 budget also wants a $16 million Special Operations Command training and operations facilities at the airbase.

At Kecskemet Air Base, in Hungary, the administration wanted $56 million in 2018 to upgrade fuel storage, airstrip construction, and other improvements to support the McDonnell Douglas F-15 Eagle and Lockheed C-5 Galaxy aircraft.

At the Malacky Air Base, in Slovakia, the FY’19 budget asks for a large munitions storage facility, where FY’18 budget asked for tactical fighter aircraft parking for the Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II and McDonnell Douglas F-15 Eagle. Piecing together the puzzle, the new munitions storage facility could store laser-guided bombs and missiles.

“Across the board, I think there’s a recognition that we took our eye off the ball, and now that we want to increase our deterrence capabilities, we’re seeing deficiencies, and we’re correcting them,” said retired Gen. Frank Gorenc, who served as the Commander, U.S. Air Forces Europe; Commander, U.S. Air Forces Africa; Commander, Allied Air Command; and Director, Joint Air Power Competence Center.

“And while those airfield improvements may appear mundane, the ability to operate in such a distributed fashion across Europe gives the U.S. Air Force real capability, both as a deterrent and in a potential conflict,” he told Defense News.

“That’s not sexy stuff, but for an airman, there’s nothing more exciting than an airfield that is actually capable of generating high-volume combat operations with fuel and weapons and those kinds of things,” Gorenc said.

He added, “And I can assure you there’s so much work to be done in those areas, that have to be done, that have been facilitated by that extra funding. It’s really exciting.”

The FY’19 EDI request also shows the Trump administration wanting to allocate large sums of taxpayers dollars to upgrade the largest U.S. Air Force bases in Europe: Ramstein, Germany, and Royal Air Force Fairford, U.K. The EDI also specifies a number of construction projects to upgrade logistics across all domains, such as ammunition storage, staging areas, rail improvements, bulk fuel facilities, and airfield and port improvements.

The aggressive spending of Air Force investments across Europe could be due to service’s footprint is at a low point, “down to some 34,000 personnel, six main operating bases and 204 aircraft ― from 72,000 personnel, 25 main operating bases and 805 aircraft during the 1990s,” said Defense News.

Amid the threats of a Russian invasion of Europe, the U.S. Air Force is preparing to repel Russian forces, provide adequate air support to NATO allies, and attempt to seize the militarized Russian enclave Kaliningrad.

Last week, we reported that new satellite images show Russia may have significantly modernized a nuclear weapons storage bunker and security system at a secret facility in Kaliningrad.

Not too long ago, Moscow deployed the nuclear-capable Iskander missiles to the region. So, it would make sense that Moscow is creating a nuclear umbrella around Kaliningrad to deter NATO from an invasion.

“What you see is a realization that you can’t defend Eastern Europe from Western Europe,” Cancian said. “If all your forces are in Germany and in an emergency, you try to rush them east, it’s just going to take too long. Just doing the paperwork [from Germany to Poland] takes a week. It’s clearly better to have your forces in Eastern Europe to start with.”  

While it seems the Trump administration is quickly preparing for war with Russia through massive military infrastructure projects in Europe, it has been quite obvious that the priorities of ‘America first’ through investments in domestic infrastructure projects are nowhere to be seen.

War is coming, just follow the taxpayers’ money to Europe.


Joe Trader DaiRR Fri, 06/29/2018 - 04:39 Permalink

And there WILL be a full size NATO military base in Poland - coming soon!


Cry more Tyler - you still have no criticism towards russia's forward bases in Belarus, nor towards russia's development of hypersonic missiles which contradicts putin's balance of power argument - a clear double standard - which again, discredits you and your website.

In reply to by DaiRR

38BWD22 HenryHall Fri, 06/29/2018 - 05:31 Permalink


Hard to believe that anyone will invade Russia.  Geez.  Who would want it?

And everyone here says that Russia has such advanced & dangerous weapons, hah...  Not to mention hundreds of thousands of soldiers.  Hypersonics!!!  Best fighter jets!!!  Lots of nukes!!!

Who REALLY thinks the West gives a shit about conquering Russia???  Not even Poland would have use for Russia.

In reply to by HenryHall

Anasteus 38BWD22 Fri, 06/29/2018 - 05:50 Permalink

Good question. On one hand Trump insists on increase of European military spending, modernizes existing infrastructure to make Europe feel safe against "Russian enemy", yet on the other he's eager to meet Putin, refuses sanctions, prefers better relations with Russia, which is exactly what the same Europe fears of.

So what is the solution to this paradox? Considering the nature of Trump's deal-making habit, the answer seems to be quite simple, doesn't it?

In reply to by 38BWD22

FBaggins HenryHall Fri, 06/29/2018 - 11:06 Permalink

Cui bono? The US is backing off in Syria? For good or for a spell? Why? Because it agrees with Russia and most nations in the rest of the world that the US, the UK and Israel had no legal or moral right in conducting regime change operations and a brutal war in Syria? Hardly.

Why at the same time is the US building up the military THREAT against Russia in all nations on its western borders? Like the US is friendly with Russia regarding Syria and yet at the same time is threatening Russia on its own borders?

Presently, the main interest of the US is regime change in Iran. Billions have already been spent on that effort, and in addition to some legitimate and non-militant opposition, the strings of all the paid puppets and organizations are now being pulled in Iran by the US-led axis to foment civil war and intervention in that nation.  That is the only explanation for the so called summit between Trump and Putin. Trump will "promise" Putin to remove US troops and support even out of Kurd-held areas north of the Euphrates in Syria in exchange for a clean swipe at Iran with a neutral Russia. Who knows, the US may even promise to normalize trade relations with Russia with such a deal. 

Forget all the economic nicieties of restoring better trade relations with Russia. The Trump administration is a WAR administration. This was clear even before his election right from the moment he promised during the primaries to increase military spending.  Everything about it reeks of Ziocon ruthless military domination. Control of oil and gas resources in Iran is the primary US objective at this time, and the US military advisers are banking on Russia not having the resources or the will to rescue Iran once the fireworks start. 

How many millions more do our Western banksters and oilsters have to murder and displace to satiate their plundering lusts? 

In reply to by HenryHall

Heros 38BWD22 Fri, 06/29/2018 - 06:07 Permalink

"Hard to believe that anyone will invade Russia."

The Rothschilds struggled for 100 years before they finally took over Russia and looted it.  They murdered several Romanovs before their first unsuccessful attempted revolution in 1905, when they sold out Russia to Japan. 

When they finally got control, there was loads of gold and other treasure, and it all was shipped west to Rothschild and his jew cronies like Jacob Schiff.

Most of all, they used Russia as a basis to establish the ZOG USSR empire, and then USSR as a springboard to conquer Manchuria, China and North Korea.  Although the talmudists didn't achieve their goal of complete conquest of all of Europe, they did manage to establish a goyim slave state over all of Eastern Europe. 

In reply to by 38BWD22

east of eden 38BWD22 Fri, 06/29/2018 - 08:28 Permalink

Yes, they really do have 'all that stuff', and if you were anything other than an illiterate peasant, you would know the capabilities of 'their stuff' and the horrible battle profiles of 'your stuff'.

But hey. Ohio has to keep busy, right, even when they are producing shit that will be vaporized in 5 minutes.

In reply to by 38BWD22

Greed is King Joe Trader Fri, 06/29/2018 - 07:51 Permalink

Russia`s build up of forces in Belarus and its borders with E.Europe are a direct consequence of NATO planting its missiles, tanks and rifle carriers on Russia`s borders. As the adage says, "if you want peace, prepare for war"; and having substantial deterrent forces on your borders is one hell of a good defence.

In reply to by Joe Trader

666D Chess Joe Trader Fri, 06/29/2018 - 08:10 Permalink

Joe Trader, hey you fucking idiot, Russia has to develop hypersonic missiles to dodge the shield with which NATO has been surrounding Russia since the fall of the soviet era. Does "not expanding NATO one inch into countries that used to belong to the USSR ring a bell, you fucking moron?

In reply to by Joe Trader

Joe Trader LaugherNYC Fri, 06/29/2018 - 15:54 Permalink

you see 3 groups on this site that support the fictional russian narratives:

1. russian bots/troll farms

2. retards living in the west who think russia's acting in their best interests, & have been brainwashed & weaponized and don't even realize it for themselves

3. an islamist element that votes in favor of that ideology (which also has retards from #2, whom haven't done basic research on oppressive core-islamic beliefs)

It's actually quite refreshing to speak your mind and to question zerohedge's russian-bias. They never question why turkey turned on NATO. They never question russia's forward bases, which have existed prior to any missile shield. They never question russia's zapad military exercises - which explicitly state their scenario is to attack specific european countries. And lately, putin has constantly whined about the nuclear balance of power being upset - yet he goes and builds a nuclear submarine fleet which disturbs this balance, and develops hypersonic missiles - which also disturb putin's own "balance of power" propaganda.


I'll say it again so "tyler" understands - there WILL be a full scale, permanent NATO base in Poland. In your face.

In reply to by LaugherNYC

smacker Joe Trader Fri, 06/29/2018 - 11:17 Permalink

First NATO is expanded right up to the borders of Russia in direct contradiction of an assurance given by Washingtown after the USSR collapsed.

Then, when Putin takes defence measures against a potential attack by NATO, you scream:
"there look, we told you so. Putin's preparing to roll his tanks across Europe again. If NATO doesn't stop him, he'll take over the world"

Methinks that argument only works if people ignore the sequence of events.

In reply to by Joe Trader

LaugherNYC Heros Fri, 06/29/2018 - 10:33 Permalink

Hey, Boris, there is only ONE country that has invaded three sovereign nations in the past 25 years with expansionist intent - yours. I don’t think there were a lot of Zionists in Crimea, Georgia or Ukraine. 

How inconvenient. There has never been, and will never be, an invasion of Russia by the US or its allies. There will never be a first strike attack. Only Vlad, the demonic “messiah” of Mother Russia, holds the key to peace in the world. Only Vlad, the false prophet, kleptocrat, dictator President-for-Life, laughs as he prepares his doomsday machine.

This has absolutely nothing to do with Israel or Jews. That is the classic deflection, the straw man, to “Blame to Joos” as you rape Europe once again. Yes, ask the citizens of the former SSR’s how they feel about Russia’s adventurism. Ask how anxious they are to once again be under the boot heel of the oppressor.

And Vlad is no “protector of all Christians.” This Ilyin-inspired propaganda to make stupid, lazy white cows believe they have the moral high ground is a transparent veil of shit behind which the closeted Strongman™ stands, naked to the waist, rampant, licking his chops over the exposed hindquarters of Europe.

Even Trump knows that to show weakness in the face of the pocket despot would be a mistake. Vlad longs for the high sign to send his tanks into Poland, to sweep across Eastern Europe once again, so that he can reign as a Tsar, bedecked in his $7,000 suits, his million-dollar wristwatches, his bespoke Lobb shoes, his vast collection of planes, cars, helicopters, palaces, dachas - all registered to shell companies controlled by his family and cronies, and paid out of the stolen wealth of Russia now stored in offshore banks. Tsar Vladimir Vlaimirovich I, the nuclear prince, has his hypersonic phallus pointed at the rectum of the West,

In reply to by Heros

LaugherNYC smacker Fri, 06/29/2018 - 11:26 Permalink

Read what the man says. Watch him build up his troop strength and armor. Listen to his speeches, and his invocation of Ilyin.

I tend to take messianic madmen at their word. You want to pretend otherwise, go right ahead.

Again, which country took over Eastern Europe after WWII? Rolled tanks through and simply seized sovereign nations for its own, and put them under the bootheel of the Soviet?

MY history is bad? LMFAO ROTFL. Ask some Poles, Czechs former Yugos, East Germans..... or did they just imagine 40 years of misery being "owned" by the failed Russian state?

The Russian screams in pain as he steals your bread and crushes your nation.

In reply to by smacker

Nature_Boy_Wooooo Gazooks Fri, 06/29/2018 - 16:55 Permalink

Our government pays a greater price than the free market pays. That is absolutely a problem and we should not spend a penny on infrastructure until we can guarantee that non-union contractors are afforded a fair opportunity to bid on these contracts.


A competitive bidding environment is beneficial to the this case the tax payer who currently does not have a voice at the bargaining table with the unions that the government hires with their money.


I'm all for workers demanding higher pay......but if nobody other than the government is willing to pay those wages than that is a problem.

In reply to by Gazooks

DuckDog ludwigvmises Fri, 06/29/2018 - 07:24 Permalink

The American taxpayer is getting so screwed and they don't even care... the MIC is sucking them dry building a crazy amount of Military that actually is useless in the next war.

If the SHTF Putin is just going to launch, he's already said the fight won't only be on Russian soil but Americans would learn what it is like.

You have to admire Russia sitting back watching the USA bankrupt it self, while Russia is accumulating Gold, dumping treasuries that will be worthless and spending what military budget they have on stuff that will wipe the earth clean of everything... simply brilliant

In reply to by ludwigvmises

just the tip DuckDog Fri, 06/29/2018 - 08:22 Permalink

it was a mere twenty years ago that russia bankrupted the soviet union.

back then, they tried to sell kaliningrad to germany.  they didn't want it.

if russia really does wreck the US economy.  i mean really fucking guts it.  who is russia going to sell all that oil to?  maybe they could use it themselves in their consumer based economy.  china could help them, with their own, consumer based economy.

In reply to by DuckDog

LaugherNYC DuckDog Fri, 06/29/2018 - 10:40 Permalink

Yes, it is BRILLIANT to make all regional conflicts global, to make tribal skirmishes the trigger to total annihlation. It is BRILLIANT to spend the patrimony of Russia on pointless weapons of total destruction rather than provide growth and prosperity to your people. Vlad, who presided over the shrinkage of Russian GDP by HALF from 2012-2017, is a BRILLIANT leader, who has kept his nation chained to oil as its only product except cybercrime.

It is fucking BRILLIANT to put the world on a hair trigger to Armageddon for petty regional ambitions. Americans KNOW what it is like to be at war. We lost a half million of our sons and brothers and fathers fighting the last asshole tinpot tyrant to have designs on Europe. Just because our women and children did not die in a firestorm does not mean we did not feel it. My family lost four fine young men in that war, asshole, so spare us the “America doesn’t know pain” bullshit. 

Russia knows pain, but it learns NOTHING, the stupid white cows mewling in their dry pasture, looking at the STRONGMAN™ through watery, vodka-soaked eyes, dreaming of rising to great glory. He skins you alive while you fawn. Sad, drooling livestock to be slaughtered for his glory,

In reply to by DuckDog

666D Chess I am Groot Fri, 06/29/2018 - 08:14 Permalink


In reply to by I am Groot