While the U.S. military is ready for another Iraq War or Syria-like intervention, it is unprepared to fight a war against bigger challengers such as China or Russia, national security experts told House lawmakers last week.
The Pentagon needs to shift its focus away from the smaller regional conflicts it has specialized in to fight terrorism, the experts said, and refocus itself, and U.S. allies, on these potential future wars with larger adversaries.
“We do need to rebalance our forces, but it’s not actually [a shift] from terrorism to great-power conflict. It’s really this middle kind of space, this expeditionary warfare that the military has been focused on. It hasn’t really been terrorism, it’s been basically re-fighting the Iraq war,” said Paul Scharre, director of the technology and national security program at the Center for a New American Security, during testimony before the House Armed Services Committee hearing on the future of U.S. warfare.
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