US military gets 'laser focused' on keeping up with China | CNN
June 11, 2021. Summarized by summa-bot.
Compression ratio: 20.6%. 1 min read.
China was first and foremost on the minds of American politicians, planners and military officials during Thursday's congressional hearing on the Pentagon's defense authorization request for the forthcoming fiscal year.
“The efforts I am directing today will improve the department’s ability to revitalize our network of allies and partners, bolster deterrence, and accelerate the development of new operational concepts, emerging capabilities, future force posture and a modernized civilian and military workforce,” Austin said in a statement.
Specific steps under Austin’s plan are secret, but in testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee on Thursday, the defense secretary said the proposed $715 billion Defense Department budget focuses on “matching the pacing challenge that we clearly see from the People’s Republic of China,” so it includes “more than $5 billion dollars for the Pacific defense initiative” in 2022.
“The most significant military threat that we’re focused on – and you’ve heard me say this probably 100 times senator – is China,” Austin said.
Though the Taiwan Relations Act – US law since 1979 – does not state outright whether the US will intervene militarily should China attack the island, it does mandate that Washington “maintain the capacity of the United States to resist any resort to force or other forms of coercion that would jeopardize the security, or the social or economic system, of the people on Taiwan,” as well as providing Taipei with defensive weaponry.
Military-to-military relationships are part of this outreach and there will be more exercises with allies and partners,” a Defense Department report on the task force said.