While it makes sense to split your forces so they cannot all be taken out in one hit, a group of 2–4 Raptors is not going to worry China or Russia. The US is simply offering up one of its crown jewels to be devoured piece-meal. And a correction; last paragraph — Russia has flown in international airspace near NATO members which has prompted interceptions. This is legitimate and understandable given the locations of both. The Baltic countries always scream loudly because they dont want to, and in fact cant afford, their own defense.