As part of a strategy to deter Russian aggression, the United States is planning to pump hundreds of millions of dollars into military installations in Eastern Europe. A report in The AirForceTimes
claims the U.S. is planning to spend $214 million of European Deterrence Initiative Funds (EDI) on modernising air bases in strategic locations from Iceland to Romania
. EDI funding was established after the annexation of Crimea by Russia in order to increase the U.S. presence in Europe for security purposes.
Even though the military infrastructure and fighter detachments at Keflavik in Iceland are not directly adjacent to Russia, they have proven pivotal for intercepting Russian bombers over the Atlantic. Iceland is also strategically vital when it comes to hunting Russian submarines. NATO continues to maintain an air policing detachment in Iceland on a rotational basis and the U.S. is set to invest $14 million into the facility this year, primarily to build hangars for sub-hunting aircraft. Elsewhere, the key logistics center at Sanem in Luxembourg will receive the lion's share of funding, some $67.4 million. Kecskemet Air Base in Hungary is also going to see a considerable financial injection to the tune of $55.4 million.
Even though the U.S. is going to heavily invest in these bases, some of which will temporarily host high-tech fighters like the F-22 and F-35, there are no plans for U.S. troops to be stationed at these locations permanently. They will serve as rotational hubs that will improve U.S. and allied military readiness
across Eastern Europe.