A couple of days ago, a 36-page long document titled the 2019 National Intelligence Strategy first appeared on the Office of the director of national intelligence (ODNI) website. This paper explores the threats that the US is alleged to face over the course of the next four years. Additionally, the paper outlines the tasks and duties of various security and civil bodies that are bound to adjust accordingly to prepare for the incoming threats. ODNI states that the main threat America is going to face in the foreseeable future is Western isolationism that is said to be exacerbated by the “weakening” of the post-WWII “rule-based” order and the nations that have embraced the rapidly evolving modern geopolitical landscape.
This strategy that wasn’t released since 2014, notes major changes in the world led by China’s emergence as a global economic and military power. It also stated that both China and Russia continue to pursue anti-satellite weapons to weaken the US military and security, even though no rationale is ever given as to why they would bother to create those.
The report is the fourth National Intelligence Strategy, which is published every four or five years to set priorities for a whopping total of 17 American intelligence agencies. It’s believed that those papers are going to somehow assist Western policymakers in making informed decisions on the global chessboard.
Upon revealing the strategy to the general public, the sitting director of National intelligence, Dan Coats announced that a number of states may pose a direct threat to the US, including China, Iran, North Korea and Russia. Additionally, he described a number of non-state actors as potential troublemakers, including various radical militant groups, organized crime groups and so on. Dan Coats stated that Washington is particularly concerned with the prospects of some of those forces merging together.
It’s curious that intelligence officials predict that Russia will attempt to increase its influence and authorities, which “may conflict with US goals and priorities in multiple regions.” It’s been added that over the course of the next four years Russia will make an attempt to modernize anti-air and electronic warfare capabilities, which is curious as it doesn’t look that it was lagging behind in any of those areas anyway. It’s also been added that the rapid development of China’s military capability along with its determination to pursue its own interests in the Asia-Pacific region is going to be a tough ball for the US to dodge.
It seems that Beijing is giving American security officers nightmares as a recently released Pentagon unclassified intelligence report “China Military Power” makes it pretty obvious that Washington couldn’t be any more concerned by the rapid advances that China make in military technology. The Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) came to the conclusion in the areas of naval and missile systems, including intermediate range missiles and hyper-sonic weapons, China’s technology is not just cutting edge but may be the best in the world. The report notes that the Beijing’s rapid advances in air, sea and space tech, including breakthroughs in cyberspace and cybersecurity will eventually enable China to impose its will well beyond its home region.
That is why this latest National Intelligence Strategy states that both China on Russia on top of being capable of presenting a major challenge to Washington’s designs individually are prone to working together in a number of fields. It’s been noted that China and Russia are more aligned than at any point since the mid-1950s, and the relationship is likely to strengthen in the coming years as some of their interests and threat perceptions converge, especially in the light of Washington’s persistent unilateralism and interventionism.
As for the joint assessment of the future of US-EU relations and their current state, in his appeal to the Senate special committee, Dan Coats expressed the position that the Brexit debacle along with a string of electoral victories that Eurosceptics are planning to score over the course of this year will, most certainly allow Russia and China to drive a wedge between Brussels and Washington. Additionally, the US intelligence community has been making rather gloomy predictions about the political future of the puppet they installed in Kiev through a false-flag covert operation. Poroshenko was quick to become one of the most detested political figures in this country’s modern history, the fact that leaves him with little to no chance of getting reelected this year.
The recent annual Senate Intelligence committee’s worldwide threats hearing, that would typically feature public testimony from the heads of the CIA, the FBI and other intelligence agencies has made it clear that Donald Trump and the US intelligence community are looking in different directions. As it’s been pointed out by the NBC News, at some point of the hearing one could get an impression that the hearing seemed to be taking place on a different planet than the one Donald Trump inhabits.
As the most informed people in the US seem to agree that things are not looking good, it seems that Washington has a troubled path ahead of it. It remains unexplained how Donald Trump and his administration are going to preserve the so-called sole hegemone in its current shape and form in a world where the number of dissent voices is growing by the day. But is it really the fault of the rest of the world that Washington is convinced that the only way for it to exist and operate is to dictate its will to the rest of the world on the premise that might makes right. It’s clear that the US is depriving itself of a lot of viable steps on the geopolitical chessboard by pretending that it can still pick up a fight with any number of contenders and still come out on top.
Martin Berger is a freelance journalist and geopolitical analyst, exclusively for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook.”