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Today’s PDB includes a variety of critical national security issues.
READ TODAY’S EXTENDED ‘RUSSIA THREAT’ PDB BELOW:
US Navy official says service is going ‘head to head with our adversaries’ all over the world. The U.S. Navy is coming in close contact with adversaries during operations all over the world, according to Vice Adm. Roy Kitchener, commander of naval surface forces.
Navy blasted as ineffective on Capitol Hill as budget crisis looms. A pair of House lawmakers say they are fed up with the Navy’s inability to advocate for itself and its priorities on Capitol Hill, even as concerns spike over China and the Pacific region.
Stopgap spending bills undermine the military, Pentagon officials and trade groups warn. Extended budget gridlock would sabotage the U.S. military’s efforts to compete with China, stall new weapons like hypersonic missiles and block $3 billion for defunct Afghan forces from being moved to new priorities, Pentagon officials testified Wednesday.
House lawmaker calls for legislation to allow a faster US military response should China invade Taiwan. The vice chairwoman of the House Armed Services Committee on Wednesday said new legislation is needed to allow the U.S. to respond faster should China invade Taiwan.
Beijing’s South China Sea claims ‘gravely undermine’ rule of law. China’s activities in the South China Sea, including its “historic claims” on almost all parts of the vital trade route “gravely undermine the rule of law” in the oceans and universally-recognised provisions in international law, the US has concluded in a new report.
It is time to counter China’s data strategy. More broadly, the U.S. government should consult private-sector stakeholders while developing Washington’s larger strategy to counter China’s data collection efforts. Finally, Washington should work with partner nations and private industry to secure core global internet infrastructure in order to prevent Beijing from undermining the principles of a free and open internet.
Russia Threat – Ukraine
Russian troops are battle-hardened but Ukraine would be their biggest test in decades. Russian troops have fought in several warzones over the past 20 years, but a new invasion of Ukraine would mark the first large-scale conventional war for the Russian military since the fall of the Soviet Union, said retired Army Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, an expert on Russia and Ukraine.
Lithuania accelerates rocket artillery buy amid Russian military buildup. The Lithuanian government has decided to accelerate its planned purchase of a multiple launch rocket system (MLRS) amid Russia’s military buildup on its border with Ukraine.
US Senate Democrats unveil Russia sanctions bill to bolster Ukraine. U.S. Senate Democrats on Wednesday unveiled a bill to impose sweeping sanctions on top Russian government and military officials, including President Vladimir Putin, and key banking institutions if Moscow engages in hostilities against Ukraine.
Can US-Russia diplomacy ease Ukraine tensions? Russia has demanded security guarantees that U.S. and NATO officials cannot accept, but there could still be room for building a sustainable dialogue on European security.
Russia Threat – Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan blames violent protests on criminals; ‘It was hell.’ The government and the original protesters more or less agree on one point: Demonstrations were hijacked by violent criminals seeking to destabilize the nation and effect a coup.
US military links prolific hacking group to Iranian intelligence. The US military’s Cyber Command on Wednesday detailed multiple hacking tools that officials say Iran’s Ministry of Intelligence and Security has used against computer networks “around the world.”
Trading threats, the US and Iran inch closer to a nuclear pact. As negotiations reach a critical stage, neither side wants to betray weakness by seeming too eager to reach a deal.
North Korea Threat
Moon wants to formally end the Korean War. Can that bring peace? South Korean president says end-of-war declaration will help revive peace talks, but critics say it risks undermining alliance with the US.
Military and Space
Marines, Japanese ground forces link up at Iron Fist for ACV, amphibious training. The U.S.-Japan amphibious exercise Iron Fist will include waterborne training with the Marine Corps’ newest amphibious combat vehicles.
Classified space capabilities aimed at Russia, China could lose $800M under CR: Raymond. A year-long CR would force Space Force to chop two planned launches under the National Security Space Launch program — reducing the number of launches from a planned five in 2022 to three, Chief of Space Operations Gen. Jay Raymond told lawmakers.
Rural NC plays host to realistic guerrilla-style Army training exercises. North Carolina residents may hear blank gunfire or see occasional flares in the coming weeks as the Army trains its Special Forces.
END of PDB