Defending NATO borders in Eastern Europe | DW Documentary

Defending NATO borders in Eastern Europe | DW Documentary

Defending NATO borders in Eastern Europe | DW Documentary

Keeping the war in eastern Europe away from NATO borders is one of the German Bundeswehr’s jobs. An armored battalion from Thuringia is one of the spearheads of NATO’s rapid reaction force responsible for defending member nation Lithuania, in the event of an emergency.

“The squad can fight any opponent. But I hope it’ll never have to do that.” This is how the commander of the 10th Armored Division of the Bundeswehr, Major General Ruprecht von Butler, assessed the performance of the Thuringian armored unit after inspecting their exercises on Lüneburg Heath.
The armored battalion 393 from Bad Frankenhausen carried out a combat shooting exercise over several days, here. They used 30 modern Leopard 2 main battle tanks, supported by 14 Puma infantry fighting vehicles from a Bavarian battalion. The General’s praise was aimed at the core fighting force of NATO’s Very High Readiness Joint Task Force (VJTF). This must be ready for fast deployment: They have two to seven days to be ready to counter a potential aggressor anywhere in the Alliance’s territory. The task force numbers some 10,000 soldiers from eight NATO states – among them many from Thuringia and Saxony.
The film observes the task force during their training exercises in Germany. The film also records a NATO maneuver in May 2023, on the Italian island of Sardinia. But attention is being drawn to eastern Europe . That region is the focus for NATO strategists. This is due to Russia’s war in Ukraine, a conflict that’s now been going on for more than two years. Here on the eastern flank – NATO’s official name for the region – armored infantry from Bad Salzungen in Thuringia have been deployed since mid-2023. They’re part of NATO’s Enhanced Forward Presence or EFP battlegroup responsible for defending the Baltic country of Lithuania.

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Video “Defending NATO borders in Eastern Europe | DW Documentary” was uploaded on 05/19/2024 by DW Documentary Youtube channel.