Two years ago, the Obama administration made a strategic posture decision to shift military focus from the Middle East to the Pacific Rim. In doing so we have seen a complete collapse of US influence in the Middle East and the destabilization of Libya, support to the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, a power vacuum created in Iraq, a horrific civil war in Syria, the empowerment and resurgence of Islamic terror groups including al-Qaida, and a very troubling agreement with Iran.
All of this has resulted in a far more dangerous neighborhood for our best ally in the Middle East, Israel, who just foiled an al-Qaida plot to attack our Embassy in Tel Aviv. So does this mean we’re making better gains in the Pacific? Hardly.
According to the Washington Times,
The Obama administration’s ballyhooed military “pivot” to Asia is running into some frank talk from the top U.S. commander in the Pacific. Three years after the Pentagon said it was de-emphasizing Europe in favor of the Asia-Pacific region, Navy Admiral Samuel J. Locklear III said this week that U.S. dominance has weakened in the shadow of a more aggressive China. “Our historic dominance that most of us in this room have enjoyed is diminishing, no question.”
China has flexed its muscles in a number of ways:
- > Territorial disputes with US ally Japan over the Senkaku Islands
- > The creation of an air defense zone requiring foreign civilian and military aircraft to notify Chinese authorities of flight plans and even cargo
- > Testing of ultra-high-speed missile vehicle potentially capable of challenging US Pacific operations
- > Testing of a hypersonic glide vehicle
- > An intentional confrontation initiated by the Chinese Navy that could have caused a collision with a US Navy Cruiser warship, as we reported here
We need to think about all scenarios, not just the ones we’ve been dealing with over the last several years where we’ve enjoyed basic air superiority and basic sea superiority. There are places in the world where in this century we won’t have them.
On January 5, 2012 President Obama pledged his strategy would put more military muscle into Asia saying, “We will be strengthening our presence in the Asia Pacific region, and budget reductions will not come at the expense of that critical region.”
Okay, but those words are pretty empty when we’re shrinking our naval capacity just as China is expanding theirs.
And so it goes, it’s not just the intentional destruction of America’s economic and domestic standing. The Obama administration seems more enamored with allowing beards and turbans in the military than securing our national interests and bolstering our allies’ confidence in our commitments.
I know many have an isolationist perspective when it comes to foreign policy and national security. But never forget that the number one responsibility per the Constitution for the federal government is to “provide for the common defense.”
In a world of despots, dictators, theocrats, and autocrats, the best tool to preclude militaristic adventurism is a military deterrent. The Obama administration is destroying that tool and endangering our nation.