In simulations of combat operations in various regional conflicts, RAND Corporation reports that the United States military would “get its a** handed to it.”
RAND Senior Defense Analyst David Ochmanek discussed the simulations on March 7 at the Center for a New American Security (CNAS) in Washington, D.C. The outcomes were disconcerting, to say the least.
“In our games, where we fight China or Russia … blue gets its a** handed to it, not to put too fine a point on it,” Ochmanek said, as reported by Fox News. In the simulations, U.S. forces were assigned the color blue.
“We lost a lot of people, we lose a lot of equipment, we usually fail to achieve our objectives of preventing aggression by the adversary,” Ochmanek added during a panel discussion on the details of the war games.
The simulated combat operations focused on reasonably predictable regional conflicts.
For example, according to the results of RAND’s computer games, if the United States deployed its military forces in the Baltic states in a conflict with Moscow, the outcome would be quick and terrible for the United States.
“Within 48 to 72 hours, Russian forces are able to reach a capital of a Baltic state,” he said. According to the Fox News report, Ochmanek explained that in another theatre, “a Chinese invasion of Taiwan, while a massive military gamble for China, would also pose a huge challenge for U.S. forces in the area.”
The missiles amassed by these two military powers would be turned on the forces of the United States and the devastation would be nearly complete and certainly debilitating.
Fox News reported:
“Russia and China have amassed large inventories of precision-guided cruise missiles and ballistic missiles that can reach hundreds of miles and strike military targets, the researcher said. Set against this backdrop, U.S. military outposts and aircraft carriers in the contested regions could face a potential devastating barrage of missiles.”
“They send salvos that are so great that we cannot intercept all the missiles,” Ochmanek said, referring to the number of missiles that would be fired at American resources in the region.
Now we come to the part of the story where RAND and the reporters who revealed the frightening future for the U.S. military should it get engaged in combat with China or Russia.
Here’s what Fox News recommends as a reaction to the scary scenario published by RAND:
“For a sustained investment of an additional $8 billion a year between 2020 and 2030, the U.S. Air Force could buy the kit needed to make a difference,” he said, noting that similar sums would be required for the Army and Navy.
President Trump’s fiscal 2020 budget plan proposes $750 billion for defense, up 5 percent from fiscal 2019.
America’s posture is also key when it comes to challenging potential adversaries such as Russia, according to Ochmanek. “It’s putting more combat power back into Europe, and putting it on Europe’s eastern flank,” he said.
Growing the U.S. military establishment is certainly one way to go forward. As is getting more involved in Europe, Asia, the Middle East, South America, Africa, and every other corner of the earth, so as to be able to quickly settle any armed conflict to flare up in any field in any far flung battlefield.
Or, we could follow the sage suggestions of our Founding Fathers.
In his Farewell Address (written mostly by James Madison), George Washington gave the following counsel to his countrymen:
“Hence, likewise, they will avoid the necessity of those overgrown military establishments which, under any form of government, are inauspicious to liberty, and which are to be regarded as particularly hostile to republican liberty.”
The great rule of conduct for us in regard to foreign nations is in extending our commercial relations, to have with them as little political connection as possible. So far as we have already formed engagements, let them be fulfilled with perfect good faith. Here let us stop. Europe has a set of primary interests which to us have none; or a very remote relation. Hence she must be engaged in frequent controversies, the causes of which are essentially foreign to our concerns. Hence, therefore, it must be unwise in us to implicate ourselves by artificial ties in the ordinary vicissitudes of her politics, or the ordinary combinations and collisions of her friendships or enmities.
Our detached and distant situation invites and enables us to pursue a different course. If we remain one people under an efficient government. the period is not far off when we may defy material injury from external annoyance; when we may take such an attitude as will cause the neutrality we may at any time resolve upon to be scrupulously respected; when belligerent nations, under the impossibility of making acquisitions upon us, will not lightly hazard the giving us provocation; when we may choose peace or war, as our interest, guided by justice, shall counsel.
Why forego the advantages of so peculiar a situation? Why quit our own to stand upon foreign ground? Why, by interweaving our destiny with that of any part of Europe, entangle our peace and prosperity in the toils of European ambition, rivalship, interest, humor or caprice?
It is our true policy to steer clear of permanent alliances with any portion of the foreign world; so far, I mean, as we are now at liberty to do it; for let me not be understood as capable of patronizing infidelity to existing engagements. I hold the maxim no less applicable to public than to private affairs, that honesty is always the best policy. I repeat it, therefore, let those engagements be observed in their genuine sense. But, in my opinion, it is unnecessary and would be unwise to extend them.
Finally, while not strictly a member of the Founding Generation, the following words from John Quincy Adams should be sent to every member of Congress and every president before they vote to sacrifice the lives of Americans on the altar of foreign military intervention. Adams declared, speaking of America:
Wherever the standard of freedom and Independence has been or shall be unfurled, there will her heart, her benedictions and her prayers be. But she goes not abroad, in search of monsters to destroy. She is the well-wisher to the freedom and independence of all. She is the champion and vindicator only of her own. She will commend the general cause by the countenance of her voice, and the benignant sympathy of her example. She well knows that by once enlisting under other banners than her own, were they even the banners of foreign independence, she would involve herself beyond the power of extrication, in all the wars of interest and intrigue, of individual avarice, envy, and ambition, which assume the colors and usurp the standard of freedom. The fundamental maxims of her policy would insensibly change from liberty to force.... She might become the dictatress of the world. She would be no longer the ruler of her own spirit….
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