8500 US and 40,000 NATO Troops Placed on Standby

The Pentagon has put 8500 troops on alert for possible deployment to Eastern Europe in case Russia invades the Ukraine.

I think there is no chance of any direct US or NATO engagement of Russian troops inside Ukraine. Troops would be doing to other nearby countries.

The UK and USA are drawing down embassy staff and embassy families from Ukraine.

There is also a 40,000 troop NATO Response Force. There is rumors of considerations to activate those troops. The NATO website reports:

NATO Allies are putting forces on standby and sending additional ships and fighter jets to NATO deployments in eastern Europe, reinforcing Allied deterrence and defence as Russia continues its military build-up in and around Ukraine.

France took the lead of NATO’s highest-readiness military force on Saturday, 1 January 2022, for a period of one year. The formation, formally known as NATO’s Very High Readiness Joint Task Force (VJTF), was created in 2014 in response to crises in the Middle East and Russia’s aggression against Ukraine, and is permanently available to move within days to defend any Ally. The VJTF is the highest-readiness element of NATO’s 40,000-strong Response Force.

In 2022, the VJTF will comprise a multinational force of several thousand troops. The Franco-German brigade of 3,500 troops will serve as the core of the force, drawing on the 1st Infantry Regiment and the 3rd Hussar Regiment. Led by France’s Rapid Reaction Corps in Lille, the Franco-German brigade is a bi-national unit, underlining the strong bond between NATO Allies Germany and France. Other NATO countries, including Spain, Portugal, and Poland will also provide forces. The majority of the force is comprised of units from the lead brigade.

NATO deployed a few thousand troops to some of the Baltic state NATO member countries in 2014 after Russia invaded Crimea. NATO did not stop Russia from taking Crimea but they sent troops to the neighboring allied countries to draw a line against Russia expanding its aggression.

This is the US and NATO telling Russia and Putin take half or the entire Ukraine but go no further. We will actually fight to protect NATO countries like Estonia, Lithuania and Latvia.

NATO original members were Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Joining later were Greece and Turkey (1952), West Germany (1955 and as whole Germany in 1990, Spain (1982), the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Poland (1999), Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia, and Slovenia (2004), Albania and Croatia (2009), Montenegro (2017), and North Macedonia (2020).

SOURCES- NATO, White House, NBC News
Written by Brian Wang, Nextbigfuture.com