June 18, 2020

Menendez & Engel Introduce Legislation to Prohibit Funding for Trump’s Reckless Troop Withdrawal from Germany

WASHINGTONSenator Bob Menendez, Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Representative Eliot L. Engel, Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, today announced the Maintaining United States National Security Interests in Europe Act, bicameral legislation to restrict funding for the implementation of President Trump’s reckless plans to withdraw some U.S. forces from Germany.

“The current U.S. troop presence in Germany is in the U.S. national security interest. Full stop.  To argue otherwise ignores decades of history as well and urgent and pressing threats to the U.S. coming from Russia and the Middle East,” said Senator Menendez. “For decades, Germany has also served as an essential platform that allows our military to provide life-saving medical care at Landstuhl hospital, to support the Enhanced Forward Presence effort in Eastern Europe to counter Russia and support U.S. national security interests across the Middle East and Africa. The Administration has made no effort to explain how our country is stronger because of this drawdown decision. Because we’re not. This drawdown weakens America and Europe. And Vladimir Putin understands and appreciates that better than anyone.”

“Rather than heeding the overwhelming bipartisan rebuke from Congress about this scheme and its catastrophic consequences, President Trump has once again made foreign policy decisions based solely on his absurd affection for Vladimir Putin, a murderous dictator who has attacked America and our allies,” said Representative Engel. “President Trump’s disastrous decision to withdraw thousands of troops from and reduce the total force cap in Germany endangers our national security. Our legislation will stop the Administration from carrying out this calamitous policy.”

The Maintaining United States National Security Interests in Europe Act would:

  • Prohibit the use of funds to withdraw or otherwise reduce the presence of U.S. armed forces in Europe unless—

    • The host government submits a written request to the U.S. government; or
    • The President declares this intent 180 days before the planned withdrawal date justifying the decision, explaining the national security benefits, and outlining a plan to offset the reduction in the U.S. conventional deterrent in Europe;
    • Congress passed a joint resolution endorsing the withdrawal;
    • Secretary of State and Secretary of Defense publicly testify before the appropriate congressional committees within 14 days of the announcement.

  • The legislation would also require a report to Congress no later than 60 days after the enactment of this act detailing the process by which the withdrawal from Germany was decided, a description of communications with NATO allies and Germany, and an analysis of the national security implications of such a withdrawal.

Full text of the legislation can be found HERE.

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