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'Fort Trump' Could Become Reality

Polish President Andrzej Duda wants permanent American military base in Poland
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Sep 18, 2018 5:47 PM CDT
President Donald Trump speaks during a meeting with Polish President Andrzej Duda during a meeting in the Oval Office of the White House, Tuesday, Sept. 18, 2018, in Washington.   (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
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(Newser) – Poland's leader pressed President Donald Trump on Tuesday to consider creating a permanent American military base in Poland, offering a tempting incentive: The installation would be called "Fort Trump." Polish President Andrzej Duda extended the invitation during a one-on-one meeting with Trump at the White House that focused heavily on the US presence in Poland as the country faces Russia's increased military activities in the region, the AP reports. Trump said during a joint news conference with Duda that he was considering the idea and noted that Poland had offered more than $2 billion to the US to pay for such an effort. Duda, for his part, came away confident that he had taken a major step toward lining up a permanent American military base in his country.

"I was smiling when talking to Mr. President. I said that I would very much like for us to set up a permanent American base in Poland which we would call Fort Trump," Duda said through a translator, prompting Trump to raise his eyebrows and smile. "And I firmly believe that this is possible." Seeking a check on Russian aggression, Poland wants the 3,000 US troops now deployed in Poland on a rotating basis to be upgraded to a larger, permanent presence. A decision from the US could come early next year. Security, trade and energy topped the agenda as Trump welcomed Duda to the White House for the first time. Duda credited Trump for making Warsaw the first stop on the US president's inaugural European trip last year and said Trump's outdoor address in Poland was a "very important moment" for the relationship between the two countries. Trump said the two leaders agreed to bolster defense, energy and commercial ties, adding that the alliance between the two countries had "never been stronger."

(Read more President Trump stories.)

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