U.S. Military Unprepared for Multiplying Threats Abroad

In the foreword to the 2015 National Military Strategy (NMS), Gen. Martin Dempsey, the outgoing chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, writes that the “global security environment is the most unpredictable I have seen in 40 years of service.”“Since the last National Military Strategy was published in 2011, global disorder has significantly increased while some of our comparative military advantage has begun to erode,” he adds.

“When read alongside its predecessor, the 2011 NMS, the new version testifies to the array of strategic surprises that have confronted the Obama administration in recent years,” wrote David Adesnik, policy director at the Foreign Policy Initiative (FPI).

In 2011, the NMS said the U.S. military “will increase dialogue and military-to-military relations with Russia, building on our successful efforts in strategic arms reduction.” But this year, the report noted that, “Russia’s military actions are undermining regional security directly and through proxy forces”—a reference to the Kremlin’s support for separatists in eastern Ukraine. U.S. officials have also accused Russia of repeatedly violating the 1987 Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces Treaty by testing new intercontinental ballistic missiles.

Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford, President Obama’s nominee for the next chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said during his confirmation hearing on Thursday that Russia “could pose an existential threat to the United States” due to its nuclear forces and destabilization of its neighbors.

With respect to China, the 2011 report said the United States “seeks a positive, cooperative, and comprehensive relationship with China that welcomes it to take on a responsible leadership role” and would pursue “a deeper military-to-military relationship with China.” The new NMS, by contrast, bluntly states that, “China’s actions are adding tension to the Asia-Pacific region.” Those activities include “aggressive land reclamation efforts that will allow it to position military forces astride vital international sea lanes” in the South China Sea.

China is also suspected as the culprit behind the massive cyber attack on the U.S. Office of Personnel Management that compromised the personal information of as many as 25 million government and private workers.

Full article: U.S. Military Unprepared for Multiplying Threats Abroad (Washington Free Beacon)

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