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NATO Response Force activated for first time

Posted at 4:18 PM, Feb 25, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-25 19:18:14-05

SAN DIEGO,CA (KGTV)- In a historic first, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) has activated the NATO Response Force, the multinational force includes air, land, sea and Special Operations Forces, that NATO can quickly deploy when and where needed. This comes as Russia continues to attack Ukraine.

Friday, not many specific details about the roles of U.S. troops were released by the Pentagon during a press briefing.

“What does it look like, how many and where the alliance wants to place them, that's all still being worked out,” said John Kirby, Pentagon Press Secretary.

The United States currently has more than 90,000 service members based in Europe, with thousands of troops receiving deployment orders in recent weeks and days.

Though unclear, Rep. Juan Vargas, who represents the 51st Congressional District said he believes we could possibly see local servicemembers heading there as well.

“I think that you could see marines ultimately going to one of these NATO nations yes, I do think that people from San Diego will go, yes.”

Ukraine is not a part of NATO, though NATO member countries border it. U.S. troops have been moving farther east into those areas to provide support to Ukraine and deter aggression against NATO, but President Biden has repeatedly insisted that they will not be going into Ukraine and engaging in the conflict with Russia.

“The United states we will not be involved in a fight in Ukraine, we will not, we cannot, said Rep. Vargas. “We try very hard not to get an American plane fighting a Russian plane, the reason for that is nuclear weapons.”

If Russia attacks a NATO country, the U.S. would then be required to step in under NATO’s Article 5.

Friday, when Kirby was asked by a reporter about how concerning is it that the conflict could spill into the eastern flank countries, he responded by saying, “It's not entirely clear if Mr. Putin has designs beyond Ukraine and it's because that's not perfectly clear, that we continue to look for ways to bolster our NATO capabilities and to reassure our allies. I mean, one of the reasons we’re doing this is because we want to make it clear to him that we will defend every inch of NATO territory.”