The chairman of the joint chiefs of staff set out new US military strategies and policies toward China and Asia in a senate hearing.
China was identified this week as posing the most significant long-term military challenge to the United States by America’s senior-most military leader, as he set out new US military strategies and policies toward China and Asia more generally in a congressional hearing.
Gen. Joseph Dunford, chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, also revealed in the hearing, before senate, that he had informed China last summer of US plans to use military force against North Korea.
Dunford was asked to rank various military threats and identified nuclear missile-armed North Korea as presenting an “immediate” threat, with Russia and China posing potential dangers based on their growing nuclear arsenals.
“We don’t actually have the luxury of identifying a single threat today, unfortunately, nor, necessarily, to look at it in a linear fashion,” Dunford said.
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The four-star Marine Corps general then went on to say that, over the longer term, China represents the most significant danger, overshadowing the nuclear and cyber power of Moscow.
“If I look out to 2025, and I look at the demographics and the economic situation, I think China probably poses the greatest threat to our nation by about 2025, and that’s consistent with much of our analysis,” Dunford said.
The comments echoed those of CIA Director Mike Pompeo, who said in July that he believes China is the most significant regional security threat. “I think China has the capacity to present the greatest rivalry to America… over the medium and long term,” he said.
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The Chinese military buildup of missiles, warships, submarines and aircraft, along with cyber-warfare and other non-kinetic tools of warfare, is aimed at limiting the United States’ ability to project power and also to weaken American alliances in the Pacific.