Worried about a violent civil war raging in Syria, the United States is coming to Turkey's defense.

FOX News Radio's Simon Owen reports:

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta confirming 400 U.S. troops are heading to Turkey, Syria's neighbor, along with two Patriot missile defense systems.

(Panetta) "So that we can help Turkey have the kind of missile defense it may very well need."

They'll help protect Turkey from cross-border attacks as Syria's civil war threatens to spill over. This is part of a wider NATO operation after Turkey asked the alliance for help, with Germany and the Netherlands also involved. The deployment is expected in a matter of weeks.

In London, Simon Owen, FOX News Radio.