Pentagon spokesperson Army Col. Steve Warren said that the U.S. is sending the jets to demonstrate its commitment to its allies “are credible and remain in force.”
The Pentagon asserts that climate change poses serious threats to many people, particularly in developing regions, who could face an increase to “resource competition” and even “terrorist activity.”
Not only do freedom of navigation operations occur with adversary countries like Iran, but also with allied countries such as the Philippines and Malaysia.
“Early last week we were well aware of the threats,” Hagel testified.
The increase of US military assistancewill be used “to help identify and respond to violations of Baltic airspace,” a defense official said Wednesday.
“The strategy articulated [in the budget] I believe is the right strategy given the reality we face,” Hagel said.
On Wednesday the Russia military announced large-scale military exercises near Ukraine’s borders.
“Our alliance can endure only as long as we are willing to fight for it, and invest in it.”
It is customary for Hagel to reach out to counterparts, especially in times of political strife.