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Why the U.S. could lose the next big war

TU Curmudgeon

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From the CBC

Why the U.S. could lose the next big war - and what that means for Canada

It was more than the usual sky-is-falling rhetoric we're used to seeing in national security reports out of Washington.
It came from some pretty sober, respected voices in the defence community.

A special commission report
, presented to the U.S. Congress this week, delivered one of the most stark — even startling — assessments in the last two decades of the limits of American military power.

The independent, nonpartisan review of the Trump administration's 2018 National Defence Strategy said the U.S. could lose future wars with Russia or China.

"This Commission believes that America has reached the point of a full-blown national security crisis," reads the 116-page document written by 12 leading defence and security experts and released Wednesday.

COMMENT:-

Picked this article for a starting point because it was most likely to be a "grabber".

I recommend that you read the CNN version for a more US-centric analysis.

I strongly recommend that you read the whole report, which you can down load as a PDF "Providing for the Common Defense".
 

Mr Person

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""The (National Defense Strategy) too often rests on questionable assumptions and weak analysis, and it leaves unanswered critical questions regarding how the United States will meet the challenges of a more dangerous world," the report says, criticizing the lack of investment and organizational changes to reinforce the new strategy. The Commission assesses unequivocally that the NDS is not adequately resourced," the report says, while adding that "available resources are clearly insufficient to fulfill the strategy's ambitious goals, including that of ensuring that DOD can defeat a major power adversary while deterring other enemies simultaneously."

The defense budget is up to 715 BILLION a year. If that won't do the trick, the problem isn't a lack of money. It's in the leadership and their decision-making.

Of course.... having a less-than-perfect military is a good reason to maintain meaningful ties with allies and not pointlessly provoke potential enemies instead of running around waving our dicks in everyone's faces, which seems to be the Trump strategy.
"The United States is particularly at risk of being overwhelmed should its military be forced to fight on two or more fronts simultaneously," it adds.

No kidding. That's pretty much always the case, for everyone, everywhere. That's why the best strategy involves avoiding trying to fight multiple major powers simultaneously and alone.
 

TU Curmudgeon

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The defense budget is up to 715 BILLION a year. If that won't do the trick, the problem isn't a lack of money. It's in the leadership and their decision-making.

But the "DS" is "Throw more money at it.".

Of course.... having a less-than-perfect military is a good reason to maintain meaningful ties with allies and not pointlessly provoke potential enemies instead of running around waving our dicks in everyone's faces, which seems to be the Trump strategy.

And that strategy would work perfectly well if only everyone else in the world would do what they are told to do by the US government (in the form of the President of the United States of America) the way that they are supposed to do.

No kidding. That's pretty much always the case, for everyone, everywhere. That's why the best strategy involves avoiding trying to fight multiple major powers simultaneously and alone.

After WWII, the "defence establishment" demanded more money because it had to be prepared to fight two major conflicts at the same time.

Once that money was all locked in, the "defence establishment" demanded more money because it had to be prepared to fight one major conflict and two limited conflicts at the same time.

Once that money was all locked in, the "defence establishment" demanded more money because it had to be prepared to fight two limited conflicts at the same time.

Once that money was all locked in, the "defence establishment" demanded more money because it was only able to fight one limited conflict immediately and would have to allow the second limited conflict to continue until after it had dealt with the first one.

Once that money was all locked in, the "defence establishment" demanded more money because it was only able to fight one limited conflict for a limited period of time.

Once that money was all locked in, the "defence establishment" demanded more money because it was only able to fight one limited conflict for a limited period of time - and then only if the opposition was NOT receiving outside assistance.

Once that money was all locked in, the "defence ...
 

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The defense budget is up to 715 BILLION a year. If that won't do the trick, the problem isn't a lack of money. It's in the leadership and their decision-making.

Of course.... having a less-than-perfect military is a good reason to maintain meaningful ties with allies and not pointlessly provoke potential enemies instead of running around waving our dicks in everyone's faces, which seems to be the Trump strategy.


No kidding. That's pretty much always the case, for everyone, everywhere. That's why the best strategy involves avoiding trying to fight multiple major powers simultaneously and alone.

The report says the EXACT OPPOSITE, that we are still under-resourced...not that "TRUMP IS THE PROBLEM". The entire point is no cuts. Sorry. I realize that throws a monkey wrench in your attempted "BLAME TRUMP" nonsense...



As far as Defense Strategy...


This:

kim jong idiot.jpg

WORKS BETTER THAN THIS:


Obama grabbing ankles.jpg
 
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TU Curmudgeon

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The report says the EXACT OPPOSITE, that we are still under-resourced...not that "TRUMP IS THE PROBLEM". The entire point is no cuts. Sorry. I realize that throws a monkey wrench in your attempted "BLAME TRUMP" nonsense...

If you would actually read what was written, "Mr. Person" did NOT say that the "under-resourced" military was the fault of Mr. Trump.

What "Mr. Person" said was that Mr. Trump's policy of deliberately offending everyone in sight (unless they happened to be autocratic dictators) didn't make sense in light of the fact that the US military was "under-resourced".

However, your first cartoon does appear to show exactly how much of a threat to the US the PRC actually is. Not only that, but if you substitute the DPRK for the PRC and the PRC for the US, you can get a very good idea of how much of a threat to the US the DPRK actually is as well.

If the US cut its defence spending by 40% then it would still match the total spent by the next three largest defence spenders (which, if you read between the lines of Mr. Trump's public pronouncements [and believe him) are 1. the DPRK, 2. Iran, and 3. Cuba).

I completely agree that Mr. Trump is not willing to work with "the enemies of the US" (defined as any country that rejects the ideals for which the American Revolution is said to have been fought, tramples on "The American Ideal" [meaning those things which the United States of America says it stands for], and insists on "international anarchy' [read as "doesn't do what the government of the United States of America tells it to do") - unless, of course, there is a lot of money to be made for the American economic elite.
 

Deuce

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On which two fronts would we fight two other major powers?
 

Deuce

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The US can’t win a war against China or Russia because nobody wins that war.
 

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From the CBC

Why the U.S. could lose the next big war - and what that means for Canada

It was more than the usual sky-is-falling rhetoric we're used to seeing in national security reports out of Washington.
It came from some pretty sober, respected voices in the defence community.

A special commission report
, presented to the U.S. Congress this week, delivered one of the most stark — even startling — assessments in the last two decades of the limits of American military power.

The independent, nonpartisan review of the Trump administration's 2018 National Defence Strategy said the U.S. could lose future wars with Russia or China.

"This Commission believes that America has reached the point of a full-blown national security crisis," reads the 116-page document written by 12 leading defence and security experts and released Wednesday.

COMMENT:-

Picked this article for a starting point because it was most likely to be a "grabber".

I recommend that you read the CNN version for a more US-centric analysis.

I strongly recommend that you read the whole report, which you can down load as a PDF "Providing for the Common Defense".

at first glance the report does not seem to anticipate an attack on the United States but an attack on our allied and interests. Is it a foregone conclusion that the US must defend our international corporate interests. Or should American companies invest in America?
 

Bootz

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The defense budget is up to 715 BILLION a year. If that won't do the trick, the problem isn't a lack of money. It's in the leadership and their decision-making.

Of course.... having a less-than-perfect military is a good reason to maintain meaningful ties with allies and not pointlessly provoke potential enemies instead of running around waving our dicks in everyone's faces, which seems to be the Trump strategy.


No kidding. That's pretty much always the case, for everyone, everywhere. That's why the best strategy involves avoiding trying to fight multiple major powers simultaneously and alone.

perhaps you may consider reading the report.
 

jnug

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The report clearly points out how devastating Sequestration was to defense spending. Sequestration could have ended. Obama tried to end it. But NOOOOOO. The GOP's no cooperation with Obama mandate killed that and here we are now with a President that insults are allies and encourages just the sort of authoritarian regimes that will never cozy up to us as a country. Trump does not care about us as a country. Everything he does on the foreign policy front is to benefit his personal wealth ambitions and not more than that.

That said, the way our system here is manipulated to short term goals with inefficiencies that abound we are at a long term disadvantage to a country like China and even in some ways to a Russia. That they present challenges that are not even remotely similar do not help us as it requires even more resources to maintain readiness v both. Is it any wonder that countries like NK and Saudi and Iran pick at us like we are are a festering carcass. Could it be because we act like a festering carcass and maybe are in fact a festering carcass.

I find it particularly disconcerting that American strategic thinking is moving away from a force structure determined to be able to fight two adversaries at once to one predicated on fighting one major war. That sounds a good deal to me like Military Strategists determining that they simply will fail to be able to maintain force structure capable of fighting on two fronts either through lack of funding or inefficiency in procurement and other processes if not both. I agree with the analysis in the report that suggests that classifying the issues and the priorities as they have been is likely a mistake in a circumstance where we are more concerned about whether our Internet connection is functioning as opposed to whether we are capable of the top priority for any national regime, national security.

Overarching all of this IMO is this nonsense about retrenchment and protectionism and nationalism and beating up on our allies for no particular good reason. A real geopolitical truism is that power hates a vacuum. You back yourself down behind your silly wall and you will find that your adversaries have moved right up to your wall and boxed you in. I am frankly not convinced we can afford four more years of Trumpism on the geopolitical front, never mind the domestic front. Trump did not get us here. But he showed up at the worst possible time IMO given the task at hand.
 

JoanDavis

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From the CBC

Why the U.S. could lose the next big war - and what that means for Canada

It was more than the usual sky-is-falling rhetoric we're used to seeing in national security reports out of Washington.
It came from some pretty sober, respected voices in the defence community.

A special commission report
, presented to the U.S. Congress this week, delivered one of the most stark — even startling — assessments in the last two decades of the limits of American military power.

The independent, nonpartisan review of the Trump administration's 2018 National Defence Strategy said the U.S. could lose future wars with Russia or China.

"This Commission believes that America has reached the point of a full-blown national security crisis," reads the 116-page document written by 12 leading defence and security experts and released Wednesday.

COMMENT:-

Picked this article for a starting point because it was most likely to be a "grabber".

I recommend that you read the CNN version for a more US-centric analysis.

I strongly recommend that you read the whole report, which you can down load as a PDF "Providing for the Common Defense".

If trump supporters think Putin will come to the rescue they are delusional. Putin has trump by the testicles and he will do everything he can to take over the USA. trump and his family will flee to Moscow and Americans will have to start learning Russian.
 

JoanDavis

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The report clearly points out how devastating Sequestration was to defense spending. Sequestration could have ended. Obama tried to end it. But NOOOOOO. The GOP's no cooperation with Obama mandate killed that and here we are now with a President that insults are allies and encourages just the sort of authoritarian regimes that will never cozy up to us as a country. Trump does not care about us as a country. Everything he does on the foreign policy front is to benefit his personal wealth ambitions and not more than that.

That said, the way our system here is manipulated to short term goals with inefficiencies that abound we are at a long term disadvantage to a country like China and even in some ways to a Russia. That they present challenges that are not even remotely similar do not help us as it requires even more resources to maintain readiness v both. Is it any wonder that countries like NK and Saudi and Iran pick at us like we are are a festering carcass. Could it be because we act like a festering carcass and maybe are in fact a festering carcass.

I find it particularly disconcerting that American strategic thinking is moving away from a force structure determined to be able to fight two adversaries at once to one predicated on fighting one major war. That sounds a good deal to me like Military Strategists determining that they simply will fail to be able to maintain force structure capable of fighting on two fronts either through lack of funding or inefficiency in procurement and other processes if not both. I agree with the analysis in the report that suggests that classifying the issues and the priorities as they have been is likely a mistake in a circumstance where we are more concerned about whether our Internet connection is functioning as opposed to whether we are capable of the top priority for any national regime, national security.

Overarching all of this IMO is this nonsense about retrenchment and protectionism and nationalism and beating up on our allies for no particular good reason. A real geopolitical truism is that power hates a vacuum. You back yourself down behind your silly wall and you will find that your adversaries have moved right up to your wall and boxed you in. I am frankly not convinced we can afford four more years of Trumpism on the geopolitical front, never mind the domestic front. Trump did not get us here. But he showed up at the worst possible time IMO given the task at hand.

McConnell said that they would oppose EVERYTHING President Obama tried to do - even if it meant hurting Americans. In fact they wanted to make America so bad that Americans would blame it all on President Obama. And it kinda worked cos President Obama lost the mid-terms in 2010 . Thankfully enough Americans recharged their brains in 2012 and re-elected President Obama. Arguably one of the greatest Presidents in history. Definitely in the Top 10.
 

marke

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From the CBC

Why the U.S. could lose the next big war - and what that means for Canada

It was more than the usual sky-is-falling rhetoric we're used to seeing in national security reports out of Washington.
It came from some pretty sober, respected voices in the defence community.

A special commission report
, presented to the U.S. Congress this week, delivered one of the most stark — even startling — assessments in the last two decades of the limits of American military power.

The independent, nonpartisan review of the Trump administration's 2018 National Defence Strategy said the U.S. could lose future wars with Russia or China.

"This Commission believes that America has reached the point of a full-blown national security crisis," reads the 116-page document written by 12 leading defence and security experts and released Wednesday.

COMMENT:-

Picked this article for a starting point because it was most likely to be a "grabber".

I recommend that you read the CNN version for a more US-centric analysis.

I strongly recommend that you read the whole report, which you can down load as a PDF "Providing for the Common Defense".

The US will never be invincible. One lesson the whole world should have learned from the 1967 six days war is that God ultimately decides what the results of wars will be.
 

TU Curmudgeon

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On which two fronts would we fight two other major powers?

I have absolutely no idea how to provide a rational answer to your question so you'll have to ask the Department of Defence that question because they are the ones who think that it a realistic possibility.
 

TU Curmudgeon

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The US can’t win a war against China or Russia because nobody wins that war.

Now that I do agree with.

Not surprisingly, the Russians and Chinese do to - which is a real disincentive for them to start one.
 
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TU Curmudgeon

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at first glance the report does not seem to anticipate an attack on the United States but an attack on our allied and interests. Is it a foregone conclusion that the US must defend our international corporate interests. Or should American companies invest in America?

One possible option is to use the one that the major American corporations used in the 1930s and 40s - "sell" their overseas assets to "neutrals" (so that they wouldn't be [directly] providing war materials to the other side, then "buy" those assets back from the "neutrals" (including all of the accumulated profits and the reparations money paid by the victors for the damage done to "neutral" assets) for the same amount that they "sold" them for in the first place.
 

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The US will never be invincible. One lesson the whole world should have learned from the 1967 six days war is that God ultimately decides what the results of wars will be.

Great ....faith based geopolitics.
 

TU Curmudgeon

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The report clearly points out how devastating Sequestration was to defense spending. Sequestration could have ended. Obama tried to end it. But NOOOOOO. The GOP's no cooperation with Obama mandate killed that and here we are now with a President that insults are allies and encourages just the sort of authoritarian regimes that will never cozy up to us as a country. Trump does not care about us as a country. Everything he does on the foreign policy front is to benefit his personal wealth ambitions and not more than that.

That said, the way our system here is manipulated to short term goals with inefficiencies that abound we are at a long term disadvantage to a country like China and even in some ways to a Russia. That they present challenges that are not even remotely similar do not help us as it requires even more resources to maintain readiness v both. Is it any wonder that countries like NK and Saudi and Iran pick at us like we are are a festering carcass. Could it be because we act like a festering carcass and maybe are in fact a festering carcass.

I find it particularly disconcerting that American strategic thinking is moving away from a force structure determined to be able to fight two adversaries at once to one predicated on fighting one major war. That sounds a good deal to me like Military Strategists determining that they simply will fail to be able to maintain force structure capable of fighting on two fronts either through lack of funding or inefficiency in procurement and other processes if not both. I agree with the analysis in the report that suggests that classifying the issues and the priorities as they have been is likely a mistake in a circumstance where we are more concerned about whether our Internet connection is functioning as opposed to whether we are capable of the top priority for any national regime, national security.

Overarching all of this IMO is this nonsense about retrenchment and protectionism and nationalism and beating up on our allies for no particular good reason. A real geopolitical truism is that power hates a vacuum. You back yourself down behind your silly wall and you will find that your adversaries have moved right up to your wall and boxed you in. I am frankly not convinced we can afford four more years of Trumpism on the geopolitical front, never mind the domestic front. Trump did not get us here. But he showed up at the worst possible time IMO given the task at hand.

You make many good (albeit painful) points.

One thing that people should remember is that you tend to get the war you plan for.

Another thing that people should remember is that "the war you plan for" isn't necessarily going to work out the way you planned for it to work out because "The Other Guy" pretty much knows what you type of a war you are planning for and makes their plans specifically to defeat "the war you plan for".
 

TU Curmudgeon

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If trump supporters think Putin will come to the rescue they are delusional. Putin has trump by the testicles and he will do everything he can to take over the USA. trump and his family will flee to Moscow and Americans will have to start learning Russian.

The odds that the Russians want to ACTUALLY "take over the US" are so slim as to be laughable.

The odds that the Russians would be quite content to render the US irrelevant on the world stage are MUCH higher.

One way to render the US irrelevant on the world stage is to convince the other countries that the US has capricious leadership that cannot be trusted to honour any commitment that the US might make. If you toss in a bit of "have an American leadership that is as insulting in an uninformed and bigoted manner at every possible opportunity" then the odds on making the US irrelevant on the world state only go up.

Is whether the Russians were "involved" in shifting American voter inclination to chose such a leadership as important as the fact that American voter inclination COULD be shifted so as to chose such a leadership?
 

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One possible option is to use the one that the major American corporations used in the 1930s and 40s - "sell" their overseas assets to "neutrals" (so that they wouldn't be [directly] providing war materials to the other side, then "buy" those assets back from the "neutrals" (including all of the accumulated profits and the reparations money paid by the victors for the damage done to "neutral" assets) for the same amount that they "sold" them for in the first place.

I was making a slightly different point. I was questioning whether or not we should declare vital national interests beyond our borders? The paper assumes we should, that we are responsible for peace and prosperity. In the nuclear age is this thinking obsolete?

any war is the final war, there will be no victory.
 

TU Curmudgeon

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I was making a slightly different point. I was questioning whether or not we should declare vital national interests beyond our borders? The paper assumes we should, that we are responsible for peace and prosperity. In the nuclear age is this thinking obsolete?

Good points.

any war is the final war, there will be no victory.

There is an old saw to the effect that "The military always prepares for the last war.".

I see it slightly differently so that it should actually read "The military always prepares for the last war that it won.".

Although it's probably stretching the point, it appears that the US military establishment is trying to get ready to fight WWII v. 2.0.

This would be fine if that was the war that those people who are attacking America were actually intending to fight (and/or are fighting now).
 

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Good points.



There is an old saw to the effect that "The military always prepares for the last war.".

I see it slightly differently so that it should actually read "The military always prepares for the last war that it won.".

Although it's probably stretching the point, it appears that the US military establishment is trying to get ready to fight WWII v. 2.0.

This would be fine if that was the war that those people who are attacking America were actually intending to fight (and/or are fighting now).

The war being waged is economic today, bricks and mortar are not where wealth is concentrated, technology is. Technology knows no borders, they are all globalists, McCain was a dinosaur, but his kind is not extinct.


we need not defend the interests that are citizens of the world.
 

jnug

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I was making a slightly different point. I was questioning whether or not we should declare vital national interests beyond our borders? The paper assumes we should, that we are responsible for peace and prosperity. In the nuclear age is this thinking obsolete?

any war is the final war, there will be no victory.

I don't think the issue is "the nuclear age". The nuclear age began in 1945.

The most significant dynamic shift in the geopolitical environment IMO has been the shift from having one Tier 1 potential adversary and a bunch of pregnant roller skates tagging along (meaning small timers) to the environment we have now that includes two Tier 1 potential adversaries and a number of Tier 2 potential adversaries including NK and Iran already on the list and enough fluidity in a number of other countries to suggest uncertainty about where the heck they are going. Turkey cannot be relied upon at this point for one. Our Saudi relationship is actually not a state to state relationship in the era of Trump for another. It is a relationship of personal financial convenience between Trump who happens to be President and his crooked Son-in-Law and the Crown Prince, MBS.

The issue IMO is not whether or not we can be or even are capable of being responsible for worldwide peace and prosperity as much as it is the destruction of or maybe more accurately the deconstruction of the post WW2 order that has been in the main responsible for a peaceful world. This right in the face of an entirely different set of geopolitical dynamics that include a number of potentially very capable adversaries stacked closely with each other as opposed to having one big adversary and a bunch of also rans.

To the extent that we via Trump are contributing to the deconstruction of that world order, we are backing ourselves into an untenable position. Trump completely ignores the real value our alliances bring to the table so he can castigate them over issues that can be and are being resolved. Trump thinks we have gotten a bad deal all these years? OK Donald want to see what the world looks like with the US retreating behind your stupid wall, countries like China controlling the South China Sea Lanes completely and Russian incursions causing the old tensions to rise in Europe AGAIN. Good luck with that Donald and good luck with your stupid wall and good luck with your protectionist and nationalistic instincts being worth a darn at that point.

All it will take is a tipping point. One could be Syria/Russia/Iran taking full advantage of having effectively WON in Syria. Crown Prince CamelDung, MBS will suddenly be shaking in his sand clogs. Another could be NK whose development of missiles and nukes continues unabated regardless of Bozo the President's nonsense about having "solved the problem".
 

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The U.S. outspends the next 8 countries combined on defense innovations. Even then, Russia and China are UN security councilors, along with France, US, Britain. The Soviet Union doesn't exist anymore. The U.S. is fine. Now, domestically-speaking, no... not at all.
 

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The US will never be invincible. One lesson the whole world should have learned from the 1967 six days war is that God ultimately decides what the results of wars will be.

I just spoke to god. She said she had nothing to do with that.
 
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