U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), a senior member of the Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC), led a delegation of Senate and House members this week. The delegation included Sen. Enzi, Sen. Boozman, Sen. Capito and Congressman Walberg.
The delegation included a stop in Poland to meet with Major General Timothy McGuire and U.S. military personnel to hear about countering Russian aggression in the region through the European Defense Initiative. They also met with Poland’s Deputy Minister of Defense, Tomasz Szatkowski, where they discussed the importance of the close U.S. and Polish partnership, foreign military sales, and intelligence sharing. Sen. Inhofe authored an amendment during the NDAA markup this week that would require the Secretary of Defense to report on the feasibility of permanent stationing of U.S. military forces in Poland. Currently, the soldiers are deployed on a rotating basis. This is a concept the Polish government supports.
“As Russia’s aggression grows, they are not only a concern to the United States, but also to our allies, including Poland,” Inhofe said. “By visiting with our troops and partners in the region, it confirmed the importance of strengthening our diplomatic and military presence in Eastern Europe to counter Russia’s increasing reach and influence. I look forward to working with the Trump Administration to advance our ties even further.”
“I appreciated very much getting to see young American soldiers working through what would be required of them to sustain operations in Europe,” Boozman said. “Their preparation will ensure we have a credible force for deference in Poland.”
“Having the opportunity to meet with both military leaders from the United States and Poland provided myself and my colleagues with a better understanding of the challenges and threats that face our country and our allies,” Capito said. “This visit also demonstrated the important role our alliance with Poland plays in helping to preserve our national security. I am more grateful than ever for our troops and the sacrifices they make to keep us safe, and value the opportunity to personally thank them for their service to our nation.”