Pentagon misses opportunity with Global Posture Review

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Lloyd Austin wearing a suit and tie: Retired Army Gen. Lloyd Austin, the Biden administrations choice to be secretary of defense, listens during an event at The Queen theater in Wilmington, Del., Wednesday, Dec. 9, 2020. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

The Defense Department announced on Monday that it has concluded its Global Posture Review. The review is a worldwide assessment of U.S. military bases, access arrangements, and forces. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin said it will “improve our global response capability and inform the draft of the next National Defense Strategy.”

Actually, this review represents a missed opportunity.

China is the preeminent threat facing the United States. No other nation comes close to displaying the military might and economic power that Beijing possesses — or the influence that it could exert. Within decades, Asia is expected to account for nearly half of the world’s GDP. Should China become the dominant power in the region, it will seek to impose its will on its neighbors, exerting a decisive influence on the world’s economy and on the lives of everyday Americans.

This prospect should alarm us.

In recent months, China has threatened both Taiwan and Lithuania and lied about conducting a hypersonic weapons test. The Pentagon’s recent report on Chinese military power estimates that Beijing is rapidly expanding its capability to project power, including its nuclear arsenal. Accordingly, countering and deterring Chinese aggression has become a stated priority for the U.S. and some of its allies.

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