Report: U.S. Not Prepared for Russia in Europe

For years, the 173rd Airborne Brigade has trained for missions in Afghanistan and Iraq, which has dulled some of the skills it needs to effectively respond to any invasion of Europe by Russia, according to a recent assessment. The report, shared Tuesday by POLITICO, says it lacks necessary equipment to face down a potential Russian attack.

 

POLITICO reported Tuesday morning on a new assessment report on the U.S. rapid-deployment force stationed in Italy that states it faces a number of “capability gaps” in the event it should be called into combat against Russian forces in Europe.

The report, commissioned by then-Army 173rd Airborne Brigade Commander Col. Gregory Anderson said the unit lacks “essential capabilities needed to accomplish its mission effectively and with decisive speed.” The POLITICO report states:

[Y]ears of deployments to both Iraq and Afghanistan, where the 173rd mostly confronted ragtag groups of insurgents, have dulled some of its skills in the type of higher-end combat that Russia has been sharpening in Ukraine, the report found.

Some of the problems the report identifies have low-tech solutions that the Army could implement relatively easily. Amazingly, camouflage nets to hide vehicles from enemy helicopters or drones are “hard-to-find luxuries for tactical units.”

To fill other gaps, the report pins hope on a pair of new Army vehicle programs that could help the brigade if they are fielded soon enough …

The 173rd’s aging up-armored Humvees, designed to protect against roadside bombs in Iraq, would be “easy prey” for Russian armored vehicles, and the report recommends replacing them with the forthcoming Ground Mobility Vehicle, a much lighter-weight, more mobile truck …

The report also calls for the brigade to be equipped with a small contingent of light tanks, which would offer much-needed protection to forward scouts against Russian anti-armor missiles …

The common thread running through the paper is the challenge posed by Russia’s jammers and other electronic warfare tools.

The report states American forces have had to receive training from its allies. This news comes as Russia prepares for its massive Zapad military exercises in the Baltic in which more than 100,000 soldiers are expected to participate.

Full article: Report: U.S. Not Prepared for Russia in Europe (TruNews)

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