Marines in the base’s live-action combat simulator now regularly do battle with Russian-speaking insurgents in an unnamed Eastern European country, readying for the conflict one trainer said would be “World War III.”

What the contractor calls the “Eastern Bloc” scenario no longer seems as far-fetched, given Russia’s annexation of Crimea and incursions into eastern Ukraine, where non-uniformed Russian troops known as “little green men” are waging low-grade war against Ukrainian government forces.

A small number of American troops are already on the ground in Ukraine as trainers; they have established a combat training center in Ukraine, staffed by Ukrainians and capable of hosting an entire brigade.