A Reagan administration official has suggested that Russian forces could defeat the U.S. Army’s 101st Airborne Division, which is currently deployed near the Ukrainian border in Romania.
Paul Craig Roberts, a former Treasury Department official who has previously described himself as a “9/11 skeptic,” wrote in an article on his website that the 101st Airborne Division—nicknamed the “Screaming Eagles”—could be “cut to pieces” by Russia’s infantry.
His comments were the subject of an article by Russian state-owned news agency TASS, published on its website on Friday, which also pointed out that the 101st Airborne is now in Europe but did not note controversies surrounding Roberts, including accusations of antisemitism.
On Thursday, Roberts published the article in which he discussed what the U.S. might do if the recent partial mobilization of Russian forces led to potential defeat for Ukraine.
“Do we take seriously the statements of General John Lubas, deputy commander of the U.S. 101 Airborne Division, that his forces are a ‘combat deployment’ 3 miles from the Ukraine border and are ‘fully prepared’ to cross into Ukraine at a moment’s notice to fight against Russia?” Roberts wrote.
“What happens if they do? Normally, airborne troops lack the heavy weapons of infantry. The lightly armed airborne division would possibly be cut to pieces by the heavy armor of Russian heavy infantry,” he went on.
“If so, how does Washington react to such a defeat and loss of such a prestigious division as the ‘Screaming Eagles’? I think we all know that the result would be escalation by Washington,” he said.
“We bring a unique capability, from our air assault capability” Lubas said. “We’re a light infantry force, but again, we bring that mobility with us, for our aircraft and air assaults.”