For the first time the Heritage Foundation’s index of American military strength has ranked us as ‘weak’. The index warns that the Army “remains ‘weak’ in capacity with only 62 percent of the force it should have”. And even the Army has admitted that it has missed its recruiting target by 10,000 personnel which is expected to climb to over 20,000 by the end of the next fiscal year.
As Heritage and the Wall Street Journal note, “From 2005 to 2020, the U.S. fleet grew to 296 warships from 291, while China’s navy grew to 360 from 216.” The Navy however is focused on inclusion and diversity. The situation at the Air Force is much worse with the Heritage report warning that “the munitions stockpile” would probably “not support a peer-level fight that lasted more than a few weeks”. But the Air Force is also focused on diversity and inclusion. The Navy is rated as very weak in capacity and weak in readiness. The Air Force ranks as very weak due to “problems with pilot production and retention, an extraordinarily small amount of time in the cockpit for pilots, and a fleet of aircraft that continues to age”. The Heritage index warns that “there is little doubt that it would struggle in war with a peer competitor”. The Space Force is described as weak because “there is little evidence that the USSF has improved its readiness to provide nearly real-time support to operational and tactical levels of force operations or that it is ready in any way to execute defensive and offensive counterspace operations.” Only the Marine Corps is rated as strong. Even our nuclear capabilities are slipping with “Russia and China are aggressively expanding the types and quantities of nuclear weapons in their inventories. Nearly all components of the nuclear enterprise are at a tipping point with respect to replacement or modernization and have no margin left for delays in schedule.” It’s no coincidence that the ‘wokest’ service branches also show up as the weakest. The takeaway from the Heritage report that “the current U.S. military force is at significant risk of not being able to meet the demands of a single major regional conflict while also attending to various presence and engagement activities” should be a grave warning and a wake up call. Anyone worried about these numbers will find scant comfort in Biden’s new National Security Strategy released earlier in October. The NSS is supposed to define an administration’s vision. And Biden’s NSS is depressingly faithful to the woke obsessions that have made us so weak. The National Security Strategy asserts that “we have broken down the dividing line between foreign policy and domestic policy”. America’s strength lay in a dividing line between foreign and domestic policy. Weak, troubled and totalitarian nations conflate the two. As does Biden. That dividing line meant that America could aggressively confront foreign enemies abroad while maintaining civil liberties at home. The Biden administration, like its Obama predecessors, has insisted on conflating domestic and international political conflicts, defining the domestic opposition as a “threat to democracy” on the same spectrum as foreign autocratic regimes. Without the dividing line, the Biden administration is free to insist that the welfare state, its corrupt green subsidies and every single leftist agenda item are actually part of our national security strategy. The NSS even defines Biden’s open borders as “investing in our people”. Wokeness is at the heart of the NSS with the assertion that “we are building on the work of generations of activists to advance equity and root out systemic disparities in our laws, policies, and institutions. Indeed, pluralism, inclusion, and diversity are a source of national strength in a rapidly changing world.” This same rhetoric about DEI has been rolled into military doctrine so that unprecedented military weakness appears like a strength because it’s a diverse weakness. Racial and identity politics quotas are also national security. Or as the NSS asserts, “Prioritizing diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility to ensure national security institutions reflect the American public they represent.” Tellingly, “modernizing and strengthening our military” comes at the very end of the second subsection behind agenda items like Biden’s corrupt special interest giveaways, and, most damningly, “strengthening our democracy”. Only a totalitarian banana republic would include attacks on domestic opponents in its national security strategy. And that, sadly, is what we have. “As Americans, we must all agree that the people’s verdict, as expressed in elections, must be respected and protected,” the NSS pointedly jabs, before reciting talking points about federal takeovers of elections and the need for “critical reforms continue to be needed to strengthen our system of governance.” Defining political opponents as a national security threat and the lack of legislation favoring its faction’s electioneering as a national security problem is coup talk. And the military? Modernizing the military gets a meager 5 paragraphs in a 48 page national security strategy. The Biden NSS admits that “our competitors and potential adversaries are investing heavily in new nuclear weapons. By the 2030s, the United States for the first time will need to deter two major nuclear powers, each of whom will field modern and diverse global and regional nuclear forces.” The good news is that the Biden regime will be “taking further steps to reduce the role of nuclear weapons in our strategy and pursuing realistic goals for mutual, verifiable arms control”. And the concluding plan for the military, as summed up in the final paragraph is to “strengthen the effectiveness of the force by promoting diversity and inclusion” and “rooting out violent extremism”. Biden’s National Security Strategy for strengthening and modernizing the military is to impose political tests, purge political opponents and appease foreign enemies. It’s no wonder that Putin and Xi look at this administration and begin making moves on Ukraine or Taiwan. The NSS isn’t the document of a world power, but of a declining nation squabbling with itself, but incapable and unwilling to assert any kind of meaningful presence at home or abroad. The National Security Strategy is fixated on the endless bureaucratic lists of global internationalism. It’s European in its view of the United States as benefiting most from a globalist system “governed by the UN charter” rather than taking independent action for its own interests. The NSS names China and Russia as threats, but remains too fixated on fighting conservatives at home to take foreign threats seriously. And so the NSS Global Priorities section concludes with warnings that the real threat comes from “a range of domestic violent extremists, including those motivated by racial or ethnic prejudice, as well as antigovernment or anti-authority sentiment”. It urges “Congress to advance commonsense gun laws and policies” and address “the crisis of disinformation and misinformation”. Which is to say, speech it doesn’t like. Having eliminated the “dividing line between foreign policy and domestic policy”, the Biden administration now treats Americans like foreign enemies and makes domestic woke obsessions, like global warming and equity, into the pivot of our foreign policy. The military is there to be made “diverse” and inclusive” while being completely unready to fight and win. The Heritage Index and the Biden National Security Strategy are documents that come from wildly different worlds. The NSS is a vision of a world where most things can be solved with meetings and equity while the Index warns that if we face a war against a serious military power, we could lose or at the very least suffer casualties and severe setbacks beyond what we expect. It’s been a long time since our military has been this weak. And it’s never been this woke. The two reports warn us in different ways that we are at risk of losing a war if we end up in one. We’re not ready for a serious fight and if history is anything to go by, that is exactly when we are likely to find ourselves in a war.