Mattis Traveling to SE Asia, Amid Shift in Pentagon Strategy

Monday, 22 Jan, 2018

Defense Secretary said Friday that a government shutdown would have "a huge morale impact" on the military in addition to the financial complications. The school is a division of the Johns Hopkins University based in Washington.

As a result he sought to increase the lethality of the American military. "The actions on the ground dictate that America's been engaged in this kind of ramping-up of its strategic projection of military power since Donald Trump was elected in 2016". It's not just about protecting geography. Defense hawks have expressed concern that repeated continuing resolutions are stifling defense efforts, something military leaders continue to echo.

Mattis said that the United States will "continue to prosecute the campaign against terrorists" such as the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria but noted that "great power competition, not terrorism, is now the primary focus of USA national security".

"While this strategy will require sustained investment by the American people, we recall past generations who made harsher sacrifices so that we might enjoy our way of life today", Mattis writes at the conclusion of the document.

The Pentagon released a new defense strategy that signals a change in US military priorities.

The threat from rogue regimes like North Korea and Iran persist.

He went on to speak about extremist groups, spreading violence around the world. "This confidence is underpinned by the assurance that our military will win should diplomacy fail". Unfortunately, the panoply of threats spanning from North Korean ICBMs to ISIS demands the American military maintain a broad array of capabilities.

"The nation must feel sufficient capable forces to fight conflicts", Mattis said, speaking on the lethality of USA forces.

Much of the building up of a more lethal force centers on the modernization of weapons and equipment. "This means that the size and the composition of our force matters", he said.

But the Pentagon "will, of course, continue to prosecute the war in Afghanistan and ongoing operations against Al Qaeda and the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, including preparation of forces for deployment into those conflicts", the deputy secretary of defense, Patrick M. Shanahan, wrote in a memo on Thursday.

"If you challenge us, it will be your longest and worst day", he said. "There is a practical reality that we need to be able to do things together, to be more interoperable, to be able to divide up missions in a constructive way".

An advance copy of the document, which serves as the Administration's roadmap for global security, says China and Russian Federation aim to upend the global hierarchy that the United States has sat atop of since World War II.

"We're seeing invitations, particularly in the Prime Minister's visit to Japan of a great realignment of allies within the region."

The third line of effort, he said, will be the foundation for the USA competitive edge: reforming the business practices of the department.

There is a clear need to reduce the pressures on USA forces and focus on the core challenges which matter most to us and to support those actions by our core allies who are protecting themselves against what they think are their core threats as well. "The department will transition to a culture of performance and affordability that operates at the speed of relevance".

It is past time for a new National Defense Strategy that seeks to break the mold in honesty, clarity, conciseness, and fresh thinking.

In the case of the new strategy, the document will be largely classified with a modest unclassified summary to be for presented to the public. It will clearly reflect Secretary Mattis's approach which is more like that of Sun Tzu than Claustewitz.

"By identifying China as the possible enemy of the USA, when the U.S. plans for their military procurement and strategies in the future, they will take into account more of China's capabilities before they decide on is the intentional targeting of Chinese military capacity that is changing [in the latest strategy]", he said.

Democrats say they care about the military, but by keeping the government shut down, they aren't putting our troops first.

If enemies know we are weak today but will be strong tomorrow, they have every incentive to strike sooner rather than later. I've been adamant that it is past time for us to lift the budget caps and fully fund our military through a long-term spending bill.