In a week in the heat of our nation’s biggest and most horrific battlefield, we were taught the strategic lessons of the past in decision making and whether time is on your side in a battle of attrition that forced those massive collisions that caused tremendous loss of life and consequences to form the nation as it is today. The Armies of the Potomac and the Armies of Virginia, headed by General Mead and General Lee, clashed in a three-day battle for American Primacy in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, between July 1-3, 1863.
The United States Army War College in nearby Carlisle, Pennsylvania, uses the lessons past from upon those rolling hills, knolls, and ridges of Gettysburg to educate their up-and-coming best and brightest in their last formal education of the United States Army, which continues to include Leadership as each member was specifically selected in this National Security Program. Mixed in with these Army Officers are other US Service Military Officers, Allied Military Officers, and US Civilian Government Officials to round out the experience and bring forth diverse Government views. In their last week of courses, they bring in American Leaders from throughout the country to further bring diverse thinking from outside government perspectives. The contributions goes both ways as these non-government American Leaders are educated on how our US Army critically thinks and operates through these vast global, complex national security problems that the United States faces. We were one of many American Leaders to be invited to participate this week in the Commandant’s National Security Program 2022.
We discussed “The American Grand Strategy,” a strategy that has been relatively the same since 1945 in American Primacy of the World at Large. Though not in our Constitution nor in the intent of our founding forefathers as they created the United States in a revolution against the Global Primacy of the United Kingdom. Academically put forward, the time has come for a revolutionary change over the next decade in our Grand American Strategy whether we want to continue that Primacy of the World as we were thrown into by extraordinary circumstances in 1945, or do we now 77 years later Restrain ourselves, consolidate, be more efficient and let the others fight for Global Primacy. Should we continue to lead to maintain the World Order? With a heavy cost to our taxpayers of getting to close to 800 billion a year. Should we sustain a Partner centric approach? What regions of the world should we focus on, and what role should our Military play?
It was justified that there is mutual agreement on the world security environment and where and what it is. Equally justified are many disagreements on what to do about it: from the balance of China or Russia, is it competitive or is it war fighting, what kind of warfighting is it? A salient point made is that all wars are wars of attrition. Do we have a strategy of scaling up as a Joint Force and construct to fight and sustain a war of attrition against a near peer, and what would that be? How devastating would a war be with Nuclear and other Weapons of Mass Destruction, would we as an American society want to sacrifice both resources and lives to retain Global Primacy or Restraint? Either way, the movement, resources, and means of an “Integrated Strategic Deterrence” to forever prevent a war of attrition of Global Primacy or of Restraint would require strategic critical thinking to make the outcome bigger and more devastating to drive Strategic Integrated Deterrence as an inflection point to a revolutionary change of Grand American Strategy. This concept and construct are what our Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin is leading. How much investment do we put into Integrated Strategic Deterrence that goes beyond an antiquated Mutual Assured Destruction that is not deterring Russia or China and into a combined State, Diplomacy, Soft power, Economic, Military Joint, Allied and Partners construct to make the thinkable war of attrition never able to happen. Leveraging new technologies of Data engineering, AI, Cyber, Directed Energy, and Electromagnetic Force that are required to successfully prevent a world war in this century from breaking out.
We are reinforced with clarity and academic rationality that Missile Defense, Integrated Missile Defense connected into a Joint, Partner, Allied, Cross Domain Command and Control is an essential cornerstone for our “Integrated Strategic Deterrence” as we are doing in Guam, our US Homeland to deter and scale up whether our Nation decides to continue Global Primacy or to Restrain to our homeland and specific regional areas that are vital for our national security.
Recognizing the aggregated threats of 1+1+3, China, Russia, North Korea, Iran, Non-State Actors, and the complex uncertainties with global economic and energy stability, America must still Lead the way to uphold the principles of Freedom, Liberty, and Democracy. No matter how you characterize Grand Strategy, America requires a new blueprint for Grand Strategy. That Grand Strategy must be purposed to systematically defeat the threats and to advance the principles of humanity’s most precious Freedom and Liberty.