20 thousand people will be involved: the largest NATO land exercises will take place in Poland
In 2024, Poland will host Dragon-24, the largest military exercise on NATO's eastern flank in the last 10 years. About 20,000 people will take part in the largest ground forces exercises in Europe.
The announcement was made by General Wieslaw Kukula, recently appointed Chief of the General Staff of the Polish Army, Polskie Radio reports. On October 11, he spoke at a conference at the training ground in Nowa Dęba in the southeast of the country.
It is planned that 15,000 soldiers of the Polish army and 5,000 soldiers from individual states of the North Atlantic Alliance will participate.
In particular, the Dragon-24 is to be joined by ground forces from Poland, the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, Spain, Turkey, Slovenia, and Albania.
At the same press conference, Polish Defense Minister Mariusz Blaszczak assured that the country's army is "in great shape" and can provide security to citizens.
He pointed to the "modern weapons that have been supplied to the Armed Forces in the last few years" and the "creation of new military units, especially in the east of the Vistula River." According to the head of the Polish Defense Ministry, thousands of citizens want to serve in the army.
The minister is confident that the army will be even stronger. Next year, Poland will receive 96 Apache helicopters and 500 HIMARS multiple launch rocket systems, "because this is what is needed to deter the aggressor."
To add: Kukula was appointed Chief of the General Staff of the Polish Armed Forces, and Maciej Klisz was appointed Operational Commander of the Armed Forces recently. Their predecessors, Raimund Andrzejczak and Tomasz Piotrowski, could have resigned in connection with the fall of a Russian missile in Poland in December 2022, according to media reports.
As OBOZREVATEL previously reported:
- In early October, Russia conducted large-scale civil defense exercises across most of its territory. British intelligence indicated that this is an annual event.
- At the same time, the United States deployed a modular launcher of the Typhon universal missile system during the Baltic Sea defense exercises. The United States conducted the exercise together with Denmark.