What the U.S. military is doing in response to Russian actions in Ukraine

Members of the U.S. Army's 82nd Airborne Division clean weaponry ahead of deployment to Poland from Fort Bragg, N.C., on Feb. 14. (Nathan Posner/AP)
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Russian forces invaded Ukraine early Thursday, launching a multi-prong assault before dawn that included more than 160 missiles strikes, ground forces and an apparent effort to seize the capital city of Kyiv. It marked the first phase of an operation that could stretch for days, devastate an independent country of about 40 million people, and become the largest conflict in Europe since World War II.

President Biden and other world leaders responded by condemning the attack, unveiling new sanctions against Russian officials and banks, and deploying an additional 7,000 troops from the United States to Europe. They’ll join a growing military presence that is meant to reassure European allies that any effort by Russian President Vladimir Putin to extend the war beyond Ukraine’s borders will be met with military might.

Some noteworthy details to consider:

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