Friday PDB – Deadly Attacks Surge as US Troops Prepare to Leave Afghanistan, DNI says Taiwan Heading toward Independence, US and NATO Train in Albania for First Time since WWII

U.S. Army Soldiers of 101 Airborne Division 1st Battalion, Bush Masters (TF No Slack), assisted by Afghan National Army troops move into an over watch position during operation Strong Eagle 2, July 19 Photo by the US Army via (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/) Flickr

FOR YOUR EYES ONLY – With the many national security and intelligence topics that American Defense News (ADN) cannot adequately cover every day – in collaboration with the Center for American Defense Studies (CADS) – we are providing our readers a PDB:

Not the President’s Daily Brief, but almost as good – Paul’s Daily Briefing.

Today’s PDB Includes a variety of critical issues such as – China says Team Biden is increasing U.S. military activity toward it.  New U.S. Senate bill focuses on Chinese electronics in U.S. defense systems. Top U.S. military intelligence official tells Congress Russia poses ‘existential’ threat to US. Deadly attacks surge as US troops prepare to leave Afghanistan.

Plus, Potential seen for regional power plays as the US departs from Afghanistan.

Biden defense budget delay hidners Hill defense schedule.

US spy chief sees Taiwan views hardening for independence.

US Army-led NATO military exercises launched in Albania.

And, Biden Nominee for Pentagon Weapons Buyer Under Investigation.

TODAY’S PDB HIGHLIGHTS:

National Security

Biden defense budget delay hinders Hill defense schedule. Senate work on the annual defense authorization bill will be delayed until midsummer because of the ongoing wait for President Joe Biden’s federal budget outline, a delay that could complicate a host of military personnel policy and procurement plans.

Biden Nominee for Pentagon Weapons Buyer Under Investigation. Inspector General complaint alleges DIU Director Michael Brown’s agency used federal hiring tools to hire friends, but the office says it’s competing for talent.

Hawley bill would spotlight Chinese electronics in U.S. defense systems. Defense contractors would be required to tell the Pentagon if China, Russia, Iran, and North Korea made any of the printed circuit boards in systems they were supplying, under recently introduced legislation.

Military

US Army-led NATO military exercises launched in Albania. NATO has launched joint military exercises in Albania with thousands of military forces from the United States and other countries in the first such large-scale drills since World War II in the western Balkans.

Afghanistan

Deadly attacks surge as US troops prepare to leave Afghanistan. Violence surged in war-torn Afghanistan in the first quarter of the year as U.S. forces prepared to leave the country after two decades.

Potential seen for regional power plays as US departs from Afghanistan. The United States’ decision to start withdrawing its remaining forces from Afghanistan on Saturday to end Washington’s longest-running war has some officials warning of a possible ripple effect that could see the entire region, not just Afghanistan itself, grappling with instability.

China Threat

China says US increasing military activity directed at it. Activity by U.S. military ships and surveillance planes directed toward China has increased significantly under President Joe Biden’s administration, the Chinese Defense Ministry said Thursday.

US spy chief sees Taiwan’s views hardening for independence. The head of the U.S. intelligence community said she sees views in Taiwan “hardening” in favor of independence after China’s moves in recent years to tighten control over Hong Kong.

Russia Threat

Top US military intelligence official says Russian military poses an ‘existential threat’ to the US. The top US military intelligence official said during a congressional hearing on Thursday that the Russian military is an “existential threat” to the United States.

END of PDB

Paul Crespo is the Managing Editor of American Defense News. A defense and national security expert, he served as a Marine Corps officer and as a military attaché with the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) at US embassies worldwide. Paul holds degrees from Georgetown, London, and Cambridge Universities. He is also CEO of SPECTRE Global Risk, a security advisory firm, and President of the Center for American Defense Studies, a national security think tank.

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