MONDAY PDB – Biden’s Failed Deterrence, China ‘Recalculating’ Due to Ukraine, North Korea Tests Biden with New Sub-launched Missile, ISIL Terrorists Kill Egyptian Troops in Sinai, US F-35s Face China

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Today’s PDB includes a variety of critical, global national security issues.

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BIDEN’S FAILED STRATEGY – After Ukraine invasion, is U.S. deterrence strategy already outdated? Deputy Defense Secretary Kathleen Hicks on Friday defended the Biden administration’s strategy of integrated deterrence against adversaries such as Russia, despite its invasion of Ukraine.


SKIMPY – What the military records of the Oath Keepers’ leader actually say about his service. On Jan. 6, 2021, Elmer Stewart Rhodes III, leader and founder of the Oath Keepers, a right-wing militia group, was prepared to give an order he had no experience in giving.


Chinese calculations on Taiwan affected by Ukraine conflict, says CIA director. U.S. Central Intelligence Agency Director William Burns said on Saturday that China is closely monitoring Russia’s conflict in Ukraine and that it is affecting Chinese leaders’ calculations over Taiwan, the self-ruled island claimed by Beijing. Burns said the Chinese government had been struck by Ukraine’s fierce resistance to Russia’s invasion and by the economic costs Russia is bearing. He cautioned, however, that it would not shift Chinese leader Xi Jinping’s long-term goals over Taiwan. “I don’t for a minute think that this has eroded Xi’s determination over time to gain control over Taiwan,” said Burns. “But I think it’s something that’s affecting their calculation about how and when they go about doing that.”

How the US Air Force is getting the F-35 ready for a war with China. A recent training exercise held in Japan called Iron Dagger showed how the U.S. Air Force plans to fight a war with China in the Indo-Pacific and the importance of the ACE and FARP operations.


Russia-Ukraine war: List of key events, day 75. Ukrainian forces are struggling to hold on to the nearly surrounded city of Severodonetsk, the easternmost city still held by Kyiv which, if captured, would give Russia de facto control of Luhansk – the smaller of the two republics comprising the eastern war zone. The British Ministry of Defense warns Russia is running out of precision-guided munitions, meaning Moscow will increasingly turn to inaccurate rockets and bombs that can spread destruction even wider.

Ukraine troops retreat from Popasna, Luhansk governor confirms. Luhansk Governor Serhiy Gaidai told Ukraine television that Ukrainian troops had retreated to take up more fortified positions, adding: “Everything was destroyed there.”

Dozens feared dead after Russian bomb levels Ukraine school. Dozens of Ukrainians are feared dead after a Russian bomb destroyed a school sheltering about 90 people in eastern Ukraine.

One village at a time: The grinding artillery war in Ukraine. Though front-line gains have been modest, they are emblematic of both the Ukrainian and Russian strategy as the war drags into its third month: a slow-moving grind that focuses on one village at a time and relies primarily on drones and concentrated fire with artillery.


TESTING BIDEN – North Korea tests suspected submarine-launched ballistic missile. North Korea carried out the launch as it ramped up its weapons testing and South Korea prepared to inaugurate a new president.


A BIG DEAL – ISIL claims attack that killed 11 Egyptian soldiers in Sinai. “[ISIL] fighters killed Egyptian soldiers, seized their weapons and burned down their position in West Sinai,” the group said on its Amaq propaganda internet site on Sunday.

Serbia shows off new Chinese anti-aircraft missile system. ICYMI: We have images from Serbia’s recent military drill, including the HQ-22 surface-to-air system.


GOING MEDIEVAL AGAIN- Taliban order Afghan women to cover faces again in latest crackdown. A decree from the group’s supreme leader, Haibatullah Akhundzada, said that if a woman did not cover her face outside home, her father or closest male relative would be visited and face potential prison or firing from state jobs.


INDEED – Atlantic Council urges Pentagon to utilize commercial space capabilities. The U.S. military’s hesitancy to embrace the burgeoning commercial market for small satellite launches may undermine its space superiority in the next decade, according to the Atlantic Council.

Which new weapons did the Army choose for troops? The Army wants to move to a new weapon system to replace M-4s and M-249s among troops over the coming years. What did they choose to be the next standard rifle and automatic squad weapon for some soldiers?

UNACCEPTABLE – Sailors say aircraft carrier that had multiple suicides occur among crew was uninhabitable. The situation on the USS George Washington came to national attention when three sailors died by suicide in one week last month.


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. - - PAULCRESPO.COM

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