COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL) – US defense officials are calling Russia’s attack on Ukraine on Wednesday night the “initial phase” of a full-scale invasion of Ukraine.
News 3 spoke with retired park ranger Jeff Struecker, who said President Vladimir Putin’s actions were a deliberate and intentional attack on Ukraine.
“There’s no question, it’s been months of subtly moving troops, equipment and supplies across the border with Ukraine so that we can get to where we are now. In other words, it won’t happen. is not done overnight. There have been months of deliberate planning and preparation by Vladimir Putin to get to this point.
Nearly 100 missiles in this “initial attack” targeted Ukrainian military infrastructure and densely populated residential areas. After this move, Struecker spoke with friends who were moved to Eastern Europe in response to the attack.
“Following Putin’s positioning of Russian troops on the border with Ukraine, I have friends of mine who are still on active duty in the US military and who were deployed without notice to go to Eastern Europe. the East and be prepositioned. . And right now, NATO and the United States are doing everything necessary to be able to respond as the situation evolves; and only God in heaven knows what the situation will become. But I’m glad to know that NATO and the United States are well placed to respond.
US officials say nearly 7,000 US troops will be deployed to Germany in the coming days. The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) has activated defense plans to protect its eastern flank. Struecker says it’s hard to say at this point what this means for other countries, the US military or even the soldiers at Fort Benning.
“We’re talking about NATO and many countries around the world, I think the whole world is holding its breath right now because the world is basically saying, ‘this could impact my home and the way I live. Even though it’s Ukraine and across the globe, NATO’s involvement and my country’s involvement in NATO means it affects me a lot as well. And I don’t know if anyone anticipates exactly how this is going to play out and how it will affect the United States military, the military at Fort Benning, Georgia, I don’t think any of us know for the moment.
Struecker’s combat experience has taken him to the invasion of Panama, Operation Desert Storm, Black Hawk Down in Somalia, and more than a dozen combat tours in Afghanistan and Iraq. However, from all his combat experience, he says Putin’s attack on Russia bears some similarities to Operation Desert Storm.
“We’re talking about Vladimir Putin, there’s really no way to predict what might happen next, but similarities yes. It looks a lot like Saddam Hussein’s invasion of Kuwait, which of course led to the answer world of Desert Shield and Storm. It really is like that, we are on the brink of another episode of an invasion of Kuwait. It remains to be seen what the world will do next after Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.
While it’s unclear what the future holds as the conflict continues, Struecker says NATO and the United States are doing everything in their power to be ready to respond appropriately.