Pole Position on US troops leaving Germany and the election

Are thousands more US troops coming to be stationed in Poland? What will that mean for Poland’s relations with Germany? And how might it play out in the ongoing presidential election in Poland. Find out by watching the latest edition of “Pole Position” with Aleksandra Rybińska and Łukasz Jasina.

See full programme here.

Following the order given by President Donald Trump for 9,500 US troops to leave Germany by September 2020, Wall Street Journal and Reuters reported that some of those troops will be deployed to Poland. These revelations came in the aftermath of recent speculation, fuelled by remarks made by the US ambassador to Germany and the ambassador to Poland that Poland might also host American nuclear weapons on its soil. Four years ago, there were just 500 American soldiers in the country. Currently, the number is close to 5,000. Poland has been pressing for the strengthening of NATO’s eastern flank.

The Polish Presidential election is in full swing. One candidate, the independent Szymon Hołownia is touring the country in a yellow campaign camper. The President is going round the country in a ‘Duda bus’. He has also proposed a new social benefit, a voucher to pay for kids holidays, as part of his campaign. This policy will now be implemented by the ruling Law and Justice party. The main liberal opposition candidate Rafał Trzaskowski is meanwhile looking to bolster support in the big cities. The polls show President Duda to still be comfortably ahead in the first round of polling. But the projections for the second round run-off are much tighter.