Joe Biden realises Europe is ‘indispensable partner’ says expert
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The US army will send four B-1 bombers, capable of carrying nuclear missiles, and around 200 American troops to Orland Air Base in Norway. It will bring the US armpit just 1,379 miles from Moscow, and put the bombers just on the edge of Russian airspace.
American missions in the Arctic Circle are expected to start writhing the next three weeks.
The US forces are also expected to start carrying out drills in international airspace just off of northwestern Russia.
Officials said the move means the US can react faster to any acts of aggression from Russia.
Gen. Jeff Harrigian, commander of US Air Forces in Europe and Africa, said: “Operational readiness and our ability to support allies and partners and respond with speed is critical to combined success.”
Until now, US missions to the Arctic were carried out of the UK.
US Defence Department officials have shared they are concerned about Russia’s military actions in the Arctic.
Barbara Barrett, former secretary of the Air Force under Donald Trump, said last year: “Recent Russian investments in the Arctic include a network of offensive air assets and coastal missile systems.”
Kenneth Braithwaite, former Navy Secretary, also told the news outlet Breaking Defence the US could use “freedom of navigation” exercises to ensure access to the arctic.
He said ahead of Mr Biden’s inauguration: “It’s sort of the same situation in the South China Sea that when we look at freedom of navigation operations and the ability to operate in international waters, the United States claims the right to be able to do that.”
Mr Biden has already signalled his administration will take a tougher stance on Russia than Mr Trump.
In the first phone call between the two President’s after Mr Biden was inaugurated, Mr Putin was criticised by Washington for a slew of issues.
Mr Biden said: “I made it clear to President Putin, in a manner very different from my predecessor, that the days of the United States rolling over in the face of Russia’s aggressive actions, interfering with our elections, cyberattacks, poisoning its citizens, are over.
“We will not hesitate to raise the cost on Russia and defend our vital interests and our people. And we will be more effective in dealing with Russia when we work in coalition and coordination with other like-minded partners.”
The Presidents did however agree to extend the New START treaty, which halves the number of strategic nuclear missile launchers used by the US and Russia, for five years.
But after the arrest of Alexei Navalny, Russian opposition activist, last month, Mr Biden blasted Mr Putin’s Government for the “politically motivated” act.
He said: “Mr. Navalny, like all Russian citizens, is entitled to his rights under the Russian constitution.
“He’s been targeted for exposing corruption. He should be released immediately and without condition.”
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