It was not clear whether Mr. Trump had agreed to set up a base, and it appeared that he and the Polish leader had not finalized a price tag. Mr. Trump said Mr. Duda “offered us much more than $2 billion to do this, and so we’re looking at it.”
“We’re looking at it from the standpoint of, number one, military protection for both countries, and also cost — a term you don’t hear too often and you haven’t heard too often over the last 25 years,” Mr. Trump said. “But that’s the way it has to be.”
Like other former Soviet satellites, Poland has been deeply mistrustful of Russian intentions — both military and economic; Many in the region fear that Mr. Putin seeks to rebuild Moscow’s influence in areas that would shield Russia’s borders.
Mr. Duda said, for instance, that Russia’s energy policies constituted “a threat of Russian energy domination” across Europe. Russia had also been militarizing “in a systematic way,” he said.
“So these are, today, political and military facts of Europe, and the presence of the United States is only providing a guarantee of security and a possibility to defend,” Mr. Duda said. Poland currently hosts a rotating international contingent of around 7,000 troops, most of them from the United States.
Only a few months ago, the American response to the idea of setting up a permanent base in Poland was said to be one of caution. At the same time, American forces were reported to be flying surveillance drones from a base in northwestern Poland.
In June, some 2,000 Special Operations forces from the United States and 10 other NATO countries carried out one of their biggest-ever military exercises in Poland and the Baltic States.
This month, Russian troops conducted what Moscow depicted as much more ambitious military maneuvers in Siberia, although their actual scope remained unclear.