GAO study on emerging threats to U.S. shows Russia, China are not our friends

  • 4 March 2019
  • NormanL

The Government Accountability Office has issued a report on possible long-term threats to the nation. While these threats are called "emerging," that does not mean they are certain to occur. However, awareness and planning are essential.

What sort of threats may be on the horizon? One is developing right before our eyes: the global expansion of U.S. adversaries...

Our adversaries are developing new political and military strategies to advance their interests, which may or may not be intended to harm the United States.

For instance:

China is marshalling its diplomatic, economic, and military resources to facilitate its rise as a regional and global power—and it could challenge U.S. access to air, space, cyberspace, and maritime domains. China’s use of cyberspace and electronic warfare could also hurt various U.S. systems and operations.

Russia is increasing its capacity to challenge the United States in multiple domains, including attempting to launch computer-based directed energy attacks (i.e. electronic warfare) against U.S. military assets. Russia is also expanding its military and political presence in key locations around the world.

Regardless of what politicians and their coutiers maintain, neither Russia nor China is our friend. 

There is also the possiblity of new and more destructive weapons:

Advances in weapons may also be used by our adversaries to inflict harm upon the United States.

For instance:

China and Russia are pursuing hypersonic weapons –a class of weapons that can exceed five times the speed of sound—because their speed, altitude, and maneuverability may defeat most missile defense systems. These weapons can also be used to improve long-range conventional and nuclear strike capabilities, and they have no existing countermeasures.

Russia has made significant advancements in submarine technology and tactics to escape detection by U.S. forces. Additionally, China is developing underwater acoustic systems—which could provide greater undersea situational awareness—that could coordinate swarm attacks (the use of large quantities of simple and expendable assets to overwhelm opponents).

All the more reason to maintain a robust national defense and defense research capability...because both Russia and China are doing the same.

You can read the entire GAO report here