Breedlove Says NATO Re-Evaluating Force Structure

Gen. Philip Breedlove, Supreme Allied Commander in Europe, said NATO is looking to increase air policing and infantry exercises in Poland and the Baltic region and is bolstering its naval presence to the Black Sea in response to continued Russian aggression along Ukraine’s border, according to an Aug. 18 release. Breedlove, speaking during a recent interview with the German newspaper Die Welt, said Russia’s actions in Crimea amount to a “new hybrid warfare,” in which the dominant country is “applying all of the elements of national power in a coercive way to affect change in other sovereign nations.” He said other European nations feel threatened that Russia’s attacks on Ukraine’s sovereignty could lead to aggression against other sovereign nations. As a result, he told the publication, NATO is looking at relocating forces. The object, Breedlove said, is to station forces “in the right locations to be able to rapidly respond to this new form of warfare that we see being used.” He added, “We’re going to look at how to … be more prepared in a command and control stance to react to Article 5 defense.”