words and ideas drive action
"The failure to mention properly resourcing hard power and strengthening our conventional deterrence posture is breath-taking."
To me this has been the failure of this and the last three administrations. Seems like the issue is clear yet no substantial increases of spending has the Chinese rolling their eyes.
The links given to the primary source and the co-writer go to Gagdad Bob's One Cosmos blog back office reading list, at least they do for me. Now, I know Bob and like his work, but did you really mean to link to it? Are YOU Bob? You don't write like he does.
Without a National Security Strategy, there is no National Defense Strategy, and without a National Defense Strategy, there is no National Military Strategy. There is no National Security Strategy. There isn't going to be one from this CIA-NSC crew.
This COCOM intellectual mush has been in the more or less public works for awhile, pretty much a known known all that time. It's boilerplate first year Johns Hopkins or Kennedy School international relations speak. A few phrases from Georgetown here, a line or two from Harvard there, add some phrases from Princeton, paragraphs from the World Economic Forum and CFR, visions and projections from Rand, Brookings, AEI, Heritage, and CCP's China Institutes, affix a write-off by USINDOPACOM staff and it's all good to go. The "stakeholders" are content, especially CCP. They produced something which is nothing and paid themselves well to do it. Of course they release it late on a Friday, the approved time to put out the trash. The statement carries neither power nor meaning. It would make handy kindling in the fire circle to cook supper during an overnight on the Blue Ridge, though.
If "the world's center of gravity" means the same as "the pivot of history" (Mackinder), or even close to the same, then I should think it incumbent on one who argues the Indo-Pacific as being that to explain why their estimate supersedes Mackinder's long-revered wisdom in that regard.
Are they serious about the US *Coast Guard* sailing around the SCS?? Or I guess they could just mean the Pacific. It's still pretty far from home, and invites the China Coast Guard to do the same in South America if/when they have "partners" there.
A “shack” on McGrath’s point concerning the Strategy’s failure to emphasize the need to build our capacity.
>(7) For centuries, the United States and much of the world have viewed Asia too narrowly—as >an arena of geopolitical competition.
>Too narrowly? As opposed to what? Geopolitical competition is the natural order of things, and >we ought to recognize that fact, not lament it.
The administration's mindset here may be that they see competition as something "opposed" to cooperation, not thinking about cooperation as something that can serve/be very much a part of competition. (Maybe they're choosing to frame things from the standpoint of cooperation because they read 'competition' and immediately think of, I don't know, proxy wars and an arms race.) However they're framing this, it's part of why the word 'navy' only ever appears once in the document--and that's in the context of AUKUS and the Royal Australian Navy, not our own--and why the military's role in this strategy gets less page space than all things allies-and-partners-related. (I'm not dismissing the importance of that of course, just commenting on the priorities evident here.) Their focus is very clear from what they do spend a lot of time on (and in the domestic agenda items repeatedly showing up), in how they've ordered sections or what words they put first in lists, and it looks pretty much in line with what I remember of the interim if-everything-is-security-nothing-is-security national security strategy. Guess I'm not surprised, and like you I'm not reassured about the coming national security strategy either.
>a more resilient force posture
I'm curious about what this means *to the administration* in practical terms, because I can't see it meaning the same thing as what you or Sal might think it ideally should mean.
> The Quad Fellowship will formally launch in 2022, recruiting its first class of 100 students from all four countries to pursue graduate degrees in STEM fields in the United States beginning in 2023
I liked the recognition of India's importance in its own section earlier in this document, but in 2019 India sent the second highest number of international graduate students and the third highest number of international undergrads to this country. That comes to over 200k students in total. Considering how popular our schools are with Indian students, I'd think we could take advantage of that in a way better than (an admittedly nice) fellowship for just 25 of them a year. It's a minor thing, but there might be some potential here considering all the Indian students in engineering and the sciences who are already studying with us. (This line just stood out to me because of all the Indian graduate students and immigrants I know in STEM fields.)
The strategy mentions strengthening and improving supply chains and allied countries' infrastructure a few times, and gives us a clause on how the administration would like to "[integrate] our defense supply chains." I don't know what a regional strategy document usually looks like or whether this would be out of place, but I'd have liked to have seen that somebody was thinking about logistical considerations and infrastructure that would benefit us militarily in the region. (Though there almost seems no point in saying this because the administration wasn't interested in thinking about it in the first place.)