The US is becoming USSR 2.0

Source: Global Times

An overconfident America risks going down same path as the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, warned Russian President Vladimir Putin at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum.

In addition to Putin, the Russian Director of the Foreign Intelligence Service Sergey Naryshkin, Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova, Neo-Eurasianism founder Aleksandr Dugin, and other witnesses of the former Soviet Union, and the former Defense Intelligence Agency officer, Russian-American scholar Rebekah Koffler have all talked about the US going down the Soviet Union’s old path.

Symptom I: Interest groups

In the USSR, the self-proclaimed dignitaries of a large bureaucratic class were parasitic on all aspects of Soviet society. They took advantage of their privileges and welfare. Under the highly centralized planned economy of the Soviet Union, the number of commodities that ordinary people could consume were strictly limited, but the dignitaries had privileges to obtain all kinds of scarce commodities such as TVs and cars.

Today, the American ruling class have become new dignitaries. For example, during the lockdown, “politicians went to expensive restaurants, got haircuts, and traveled on luxury vacations, while the rest of us hunkered down, grew long hair and tried to pacify our kids, who were bouncing off the walls during online ‘education.'” Besides, the military industrial complex, intelligence agencies, and Wall Street giants manipulate the US national machinery and deeply influence national policies, and become the shadow cabinet of the US.

Symptom II: abusing military force

The Soviet Union’s intervention in foreign countries was unrestrained. It not only sent troops to Hungary, but also to Czechoslovakia, Afghanistan and others, engaging in an arms race with the United States. It led to soaring military spending and severe restriction of the economic and social development of the Soviet Union. The Brezhnev style expansion policy led to the Soviet society’s stagnation, and war in Afghanistan became an important factor in its dissolution.

Since the 21st century, the US military has launched numerous wars such as the Iraq War and the Afghanistan War, which not only cost a lot of money, but also led to serious strategic failures. Unfortunately, America has not learned its lesson at all, and its military expenditure reached new highs again and again. Its military expenditure in 2020 reached $778 billion, accounting for 39 percent of global military expenditures, which tightened American investments in infrastructure and the American people’s livelihoods.

The irony is that with such hefty spending, American military superiority over other major powers has declined systematically. The ensuing strategic anxiety causes American military expenditure to increase in turn, resulting in a vicious circle.

Symptom III: Totalitarianism

The Soviet Union once practiced chauvinism and advocated for limited sovereignty, which eventually led to the disintegration of the socialist camp.

Today, the United States believes in neoliberalism, the survival of the fittest, and winner takes all. America turned into a liberal totalitarian state, sprinkled with traits of an oligarchy elite, an ideology and media monopoly, and a police state. This is in full compliance with the standards of a totalitarian regime expounded by the former US National Security Assistant Zbigniew Brzezinski.

Symptom IV: Political correctness

The Soviet Union once vigorously suppressed “dissidents.” Neoliberalism in the US has now also become extreme and absolute. The rights of ethnic minorities have become the absolute standard of political correctness. Any speech that does not conform to liberal ideology is presumed guilty. Even Trump, who won 75 million ballots in the general election, is silenced by the media and internet giants at their convenience.

However, numerous requests for political correctness and diversified political identities have not bridged gaps in American society. Instead, it has created more dissidents. Anti-intellectual populist movements such as QAnon and the Proud Boys are spreading like wildfire in the US, further pulling apart the already fragmented social map. According to a CBS poll in January 2021, half of Americans said that other Americans and domestic enemies pose the greatest threat to democracy and their way of life.

Symptom V: Intensified surveillance

The Biden administration strengthened private speech and text message monitoring, and the FBI encouraged citizens to report any “violent extremism” from relatives and friends, just like the Soviet authorities did. This is a new era of the American government seeking full control of American society.

“Don’t believe everything you see on TV; don’t trust everything your teachers say; don’t talk to strangers about your family’s views.” What Americans teach their children now is nothing new to the Soviets.

Like the former Soviet Union, the United States is currently in great trouble. Its causes are not external but internal. In an internal structural crisis, the US has no choice but to pass the buck to other countries. America has to wake up and realize that holding a grudge against China will not lead to better conditions but allow oligarchic power to further oppress the American people’s interests. In the end, it is the Americans themselves who are at the helm to ultimately cure the country’s disease and avoid it becoming a USSR 2.0.

The author is a current affairs commentator.

NORTHCOM Commander Gen. Glen D. VanHerck Conducts Press Briefing on North American Aerospace Defense Command and U.S. Northern Command Global Information Dominance Experiments

General Glen D. VanHerck, commander, NORAD and U.S. Northern Command

STAFF: Okay, good morning, ladies and gentlemen. It is our pleasure to welcome the commander, U.S. Northern Command, General Glen D. VanHerck to the press briefing room today. General VanHerck is here to provide an update on how NORAD and NORTHCOM, in collaboration with all 11 U.S. combatant commands, has executed the third in a series of Global Information Dominance Experiments, also known as GIDE.

With that, I’ll turn it over to General VanHerck for his opening comments.

Sir, the floor is yours.

GENERAL GLEN D. VANHERCK: Great. Thank — thank you very much, and good morning. It’s great to be here with you. And thanks for joining me here in person, and those of you that are on the phone.

I’d also like to welcome and point out over here the commands, NORAD and USNORTHCOM have a new command senior enlisted leader, Sergeant Major James Porterfield, United States Marine Corps, and we’re happy to have him for the past few weeks, and he’s joining me today, so it’s good to see you.

I’m honored to serve as the commander of two distinct commands, North American Aerospace Defense Command, turned 63 year old — 63 years old in — in May, and the commander of the United States Northern Command, with two incredibly noble missions: defending North America primarily in the air domain for NORAD, also providing maritime warning; and obviously, defending our homeland, to include Alaska, for North — for United States Northern Command; and providing defense support of civil authorities on a routine basis, and the coordination we do with the nations in the NORTHCOM AOR with Canada, Mexico and the Bahamas.

Today, our peer competitors hold the homeland at risk in every vector and every domain. The Global Information Dominance Experiment that we’re going to talk about, and more specifically, the recent Global Information Dominance Experiment 3 was a cross-command event seeking to leap forward our ability to maintain domain awareness, achieve information dominance and provide decision superiority in competition and crisis. GIDE 3 included representatives from all 11 combatant commands, and later today, I’ll conduct an outbrief with most of the commanders and certainly, their representatives. And I can tell you, each combatant command is very excited about what we’re doing, and I look forward to that outbrief.

As the secretary of defense recently said, integrated deterrence is about using the right mix of technology, operational concepts and capabilities, all woven together in a networked way that — so — that is credible, flexible and formidable that will give any adversary pause, especially to think about attacking our homeland. So I fundamentally believe that integrated deterrence, which you’re hearing the secretary talk a lot about today, allows for the increase of decision space, and that GIDE, the Global Information Dominance Experiments, embodies a fundamental change in how we use information and data to increase decision space for leaders from the tactical level to the strategic level — not only military leaders, but also gives opportunity for our civilian leaders.

GIDE also makes a concerted effort to create global integration, shifting the department away from today’s regionally-focused plans, strategies, the way we do force management and force design paradigms, and budgetary and acquisition processes. We’re shifting our focus away from pure defeat mechanisms for homeland defense towards earlier, deter-and-deny actions well outside a conflict. GIDE spurs faster decisions and provides proactive options by making new technologies more accessible and more effective.

Right now, the threats we face and the pace of change in the geostrategic environment continues to advance at really alarming rates. We’ve entered a era of new and renewed strategic competition, and this time, we’re facing two peer competitors, both nuclear-armed, that are competing against us on a daily basis. We must outpace our competitors by accelerating our own efforts to transform our culture, including factoring in homeland defense into every strategy, every plan, force management, force design decision, as well as aspects of acquisition and budget so that we can deter in competition, de-escalate in crisis and if required, defeat in conflict.

In addition to the work we’re doing with global information dominance as we defend our homelands, United States Northern Command has been actively executing our defense support of civil authorities mission, whether supporting our whole-of-nation effort that we recently wrapped up in June with COVID support, not only medical support, but vaccinations, we’re actively engaged in fighting wildland firefighting today, supporting the Department of State with Afghan special immigrants as well.

We’re also building military-to-military partnerships, outstanding relationships with key neighbors such as Mexico, Canada and the Bahamas. And I look forward to discussing all of these important efforts and topics with you.

So thanks again for being here and also being on the phone. Let’s get to your questions.

STAFF: Thanks, sir. So we’ll go to questions. (Patrick ?), we’ll start with you.

Q: Thank you.

(Patrick ?) from Defense One. Good to see you again, General.

Can you tell us what happened in the GIDE experiment? And can you also address how you used artificial intelligence in the experiment and your plans for that going forward?

GEN. VANHERCK: Absolutely.

So the experiment — we won’t name nations but let’s just say it was focused on a peer competitor. This time in GIDE 3 we focused a lot on contested logistics, to give us a scenario where maybe a line of communication such as the Panama Canal may be challenged. It enabled us to rapidly collaborate amongst all 11 combatant commands and across the department to see that data and information. We’re taking sensors from around the globe, not only military sensors but commercially available information, and utilizing that for domain awareness.

Specific to your question about artificial intelligence and what I call information dominance, we would take artificial intelligence and use machine learning to take a look and assess, for example, the average number of cars in a parking lot that may be there in a specific location to a competitor or a threat. And we monitor that over a period of time.

The machine learning and the artificial intelligence can detect changes in that and we can set parameters where it will trip an alert to give you the awareness to go take another sensor such as GEOINT on-satellite capability to take a closer look at what might be ongoing in a specific location.

Does that — does that make sense?

Q: Yes. Did that — was it something specifically that you did as part of this experiment —

GEN. VANHERCK: Absolutely. We’ve been doing that for over a year now.

What — what we’ve seen is the ability to get way further what I call left, left of being reactive to actually being proactive. And I’m talking not minutes and hours, I’m talking days.

The ability to see days in advance creates decision space. Decision space for me as an operational commander to potentially posture forces to create deterrence options to provide that to the secretary or even the president. To use messaging, the information space to create deterrence options and messaging and if required to get further ahead and posture ourselves for defeat.


STAFF: Hey, (Ram ?) go ahead.

Q: Thank you so much. Thanks for taking my question, General.

In this experiment you said all of the 11 combatant commands were involved. Can you talk about how you worked with SPACECOM and what sort of capabilities came online that showed you how you’re going to be able to solve problems moving forward that you wouldn’t be able to solve as easily before?

And then I have a second question.

GEN. VANHERCK: Well, SPACECOM was intimately involved. And SPACECOM is a crucial partner to United States Northern Command and NORAD. We rely on Space Command sensors and capabilities for our threat warning, our attack assessment and the domain awareness that we need to conduct our missions.

SPACECOM was intimately involved in providing sensor awareness, that domain awareness that we talk about. But just as importantly, as you’re creating and coordinating globally to create global dilemmas, to create deterrence, SPACECOM offers unique capabilities for deterrence in the space environment as well. And so the — they work closely to provide deterrence options and de-escalation options against a peer competitor in an experiment like this.

Q: Any specifics to that?

And also, sir, can you give an update on the status of the radars and the missile interceptors that coming online in Alaska?

GEN. VANHERCK: So I can give you specifics.

So for example, SPACECOM can come up with options to potentially hold at risk a competitor’s — not only their terrain on Earth their space capabilities, but also potentially taking a look at domain awareness of space capabilities, where a competitor may be attempting hold our capabilities at risk.

Q: Sorry, and then the update for the radars and the — and missile interceptors in Alaska?

GEN. VANHERCK: So give me the specific question. When — when you —

Q: Oh, sure. The new middle — missile interceptors are coming online in Alaska and new radars that are — that are coming online up there, could you give us an update? Are they on schedule? And what type of capabilities would that bring —

GEN. VANHERCK: Sure, I’ll talk about the interceptors first. But the Missile Defense Agency is really your best point of contact for that.

But the next-generation interceptor is, I think, what you’re talking about. That’s planning on being fielded in 2028. To my knowledge it is absolutely on schedule at this time.

I’m encouraged by the — the — the process that they’ve set up that creates competition and actually rewards innovation and pulling further left to field the capabilities sooner. I’m looking forward to that.

The Missile Defense Agency’s also focused on a new long-range discriminating radar which will be crucial for the missile defense capabilities. And they’re on track with that. They’re in the stages right now of moving into their initial operations capability. I look forward to that coming on line here in the near future.

Q: Thank you, sir.

STAFF: Okay. And let’s go to the phones. (Jack ?), FedScoop.

Q: Yes, thank you. Thank you very much for taking my question — I’ve got a multi-parter here.

But broadly, I’m hoping to know: what’s the difference between what you can take away from the experiments being North America-based versus what other COCOMs can take away on a — on a technical level? And do you have more capability be it in cloud storage or other type of technical abilities that you can have being based here in the U.S. versus a more (austere ?) environment or environment outside the U.S.?

And secondly, what are the cloud capabilities that supported this experiment? And how would the Joint Warfighting Cloud Capability that’s successor to the JEDI contract change what you could actually implement here?

GEN. VANHERCK: So I’ll answer your first part of that. First of all, all 11 combatant commands are using the exactly same environment, single pane of glass. There’s no difference between what United States Northern Command NORAD have than SOUTHCOM, or SPACECOM, or anybody. We’re all collaborating in the same information space using the same exact capabilities.

As far as the technical questions about the specifics of the — you know, the cloud, I don’t have those details to give you. I can get an expert to get back with you on those.

And as far as the policy aspects of JEDI, I won’t go into that. What we’re doing is utilizing capabilities that are available right now. Okay? These are not capabilities for future technology. These capabilities we could absolutely field tomorrow and, I believe, be significantly more capable to create that decision space that I talked about.

I hope that makes sense.

Q: And if I could just — if I could follow-up on that last point. Would having an enterprise cloud that the Joint Warfighting Cloud Capability would provide — is that going to expand the aperture of possibilities here of what, maybe, you could experiment with or eventually implement? And what would that change be to having a (fully enterprised ?) warfighting edge cloud?

GEN. VANHERCK: So to make sure I understand — so the question specific to the cloud and what advantages that would bring in future competition, crisis, and conflict. Is that right?

Q: Correct.

GEN. VANHERCK: Yes, so the cloud brings significant advantages and we’re — we are utilizing cloud. You can actually use multiple clouds and share information, and we’ve demonstrated that.

You know, there’s been a significant focus on having data standards and getting the data right before you share it. What we found, by using the cloud and innovative solutions with innovative companies out there, is that as long as you make the data and information available in the cloud today, we can then share that information from a cloud to any user.

The other advantages, they’re — they’re significant. You can limit who gets access, whether you want foreign nations to have it or select foreign nations. Those are things that you can do with today’s software technology that you can almost do in a matter of hours and days vice months and years through the processes that we’ve typically utilized.

So I’m really encouraged with where we’re going with soft base — software-based capabilities utilizing the cloud.

For my homeland defense design, allies and partners have to be part of the homeland defense design. I don’t want to defend starting in the homeland. I want to defend starting forward.

And using a cloud with an architecture that you can decide, by who logs in, what information they’re going to get and capabilities they’re going to see. That’s incredibly powerful today that you can utilize right now.

STAFF: All right. Jason Sherman, Inside Defense.

Q: Thanks very much. General, what is the — what is the key material component here? What’s the new technology that was demonstrated that — that — that wasn’t available before? Who are the main industry partners supporting you in that? And is there a — is there a trajectory here for a program of record for a new capability that could proliferate across combatant commands?

GEN. VANHERCK: Okay, Jason, thanks. As far as the new technology, I’m not sure there’s new technology here, to be candid with you. You know, Amazon’s been doing it this way — Google. A lot of people have been figuring out how to pool and share data and information.

What — what we’ve done is take it and not approach it from a military or a capability problem. But we approach this from a data and software problem. And we stitched everything together to make this happen.

As far as partners, I’m not going to go into details on what companies. I’m agnostic to who provides these capabilities. We’ve partnered with some exceptional companies out there.

I would also tell you that support from across the department, the Joint Artificial Intelligence Center and Project Maven. Under Secretary of Defense for I&S has been crucial. The Department of the Air Force and their Chief Architect Office provided resources to include funding and personnel, which were tremendously helpful to get us where we are. And of course, all 11 combatant commands.

The last part of your question — I forgot that one. We got the tech and the partners. What was the final portion?

Q: Is — is what — does this package that you’ve put together, like, a definitive shape that leads towards a program of record that you would then kind of replicate across the combatant commands?

GEN. VANHERCK: Yes, so tomorrow I’m going to talk to the Deputy Secretary and we’ll see. And we’ll give her an out brief as well on the way forward.

I wouldn’t think of this as a thing or a — you know, a gadget we’re going to buy and move forward. This is a software-based capabilities utilizing technology that is readily available today.

As far as a program of record, you’re well aware that I’m not an acquisition authority in my combatant command hat. And my ultimate goal would be to hand this off to somebody that can move out, field it sooner than later so that we can collaborate and create decision space and deterrence options for our senior leaders right now.

I don’t know what that’s going to look like, to be candid with you. I’ll talk to the deputy. I’ll talk to the vice chairman. We’ll see what happens in today’s out brief as we move forward.

But I believe in the near future that we can kind of build the bike while we ride it, if you read my recent article.

And what I mean by that is we can use a new paradigm, a new way going forward, and field these capabilities across the combatant commands today, and develop the tactics, techniques, and procedures that oftentimes take us years to develop through developmental testing, operational testing before we field capabilities.

But I believe with software-based capabilities we’re ready to field these and move out. And I think next spring when we do our Globally Integrated Exercise — that’ll be led by the chairman with play across the department — we could validate these capabilities in that exercise.

And those are some things that I’m thinking about and will talk about with the vice chairman and the deputy secretary. But I’m incredibly encouraged that we can move much quicker than we historically have.

Q: Is it fair to say you think there’s a valid requirement for this capability?

GEN. VANHERCK: Absolutely. There’s a — this is JADC2, okay, Joint All-Domain Command and Control. It’s done at the operational and strategic level. You’ve heard the — the vice chairman talk about it. You’ve heard all the services moving out to develop these capabilities.

The primary difference, (Jeff ?), between what I’m doing and what the services are doing is I’m focused at the operational to strategic level. Taking data and information that is available today. That’s key.

This data and information — we’re not creating new capabilities to go get data and information. This information exists from today’s satellites, today’s radar, today’s undersea capabilities, today’s cyber, today’s intel capabilities.

The data exists. What we’re doing is making that data available, making that data available and shared into a cloud where machine learning and artificial intelligence look at it. And they process it really quickly and provide it to decision-makers, which I call decision superiority.

This gives us days of advanced warning and ability to react. Where, in the past, we may not have put eyes on with an analyst of a GEOINT satellite image, now we are doing that within minutes or near real-time. That’s the primary difference that I’m talking about.

STAFF: Thanks, sir. (Oriana ?),

Q: Thanks so very much. I’m curious how — if you could speak a little bit to this, how this supplements what you all have been trying to do with Canada to upgrade the North Warning System.

I know you had created a bilateral committee to study (what best ?) upgrades you would need. But I’m just curious where that study is and how this may change your framework of how to move forward.

GEN. VANHERCK: Well, the North Warning System is a sensor that provides data and information like any other sensor capability. And so, the North Warning System can be fed into this.

We — we have taken what we developed called Pathfinder and applied that to our North Warning System, not in the data coming out that we get say at our air defense sectors but the raw data. So what we’re doing is now we’re analyzing the physical raw data that comes off those radar sensors.

And that’s very important because what we found is about 98 percent of the data and information was not being actually analyzed or assessed under the prior way we conducted operations.

Now by taking the raw data and applying Pathfinder, which uses machine learning and artificial intelligence, we’re actually able to assess 100 percent of the data. And that gives us a much better capability.

As far as NORAD modernization, those discussions are ongoing. The president — President Biden and Prime Minister Trudeau talked about NORAD modernization in their first meeting. I’m encouraged by that.

Now, we’ve got to move forward at the department level to see what the way forward is for NORAD modernization. Those are policy decisions that I’ll absolutely stay out of. I’ll provide input when asked.

But any sensor capability that NORAD modernization provides such as over-the-horizon radar technology — a polar over-the-horizon radar would be able to fit right into this as long as you make the data and information available to share.

STAFF: All right, (Kristina ?), AWPS.

Q: Thank you for taking my question. So I’m wondering if there are any concerns about self-fulfilling prophecy, where you get into a loop and there’s some assumptions made. Is there a thought about that?

And then I had another question as well — it slips my mind at the moment. So that — that would be the first question.

GEN. VANHERCK: Yes. So I — I think I understand what you’re saying. You’re worried about basically escalating due to use of machine learning artificial intelligence gets us in a loop. Is that correct?

Q: Yes. That — that there is some kind of intrinsic assumptions that are made maybe on — on the human decision-making side. Because you’re getting this information — it’s a lot of information and it’s against a biased perception or a worry that’s about an adversary’s intention.

GEN. VANHERCK: Yes. So, the first thing I would tell you that humans still make all the decisions in what I’m talking about. We don’t have any machines making decisions. Certainly, machines can provide options.

So for example, if you — if you collaborate in real-time and develop deterrence options that utilize force structures such as airplanes or ships, the database can have the information of the readiness, the availability, the capability of those ships available.

So any options you create, you’ll know if they’re available immediately. That’s the advantage of having a cloud and a software environment.

With regards to, you know, the self-fulfilling prophecy, what I’d tell you is I think it’s exactly the opposite.

Today, we end up in a reactive environment because we’re late with the data and information. And so all too often we end up reacting to a competitors move. And in this case, it actually allows us to create deterrence, which creates stability by having awareness sooner of what they’re actually doing.

And you can utilize the information space, pick up the phone, call, and create actual deterrence options by doing so or positioning forces to do that.

So I see this not as something new that would create concern about utilizing this information to escalate. It actually is the opposite.

And — and — and keep in mind that it’s not new information. It’s information that today is just not analyzed and processed until later in the — the — the time cycle, if you will.

And all we’re doing is taking it and sharing it and making it available sooner. So that our key decision-makers will have options vice being reactive where they may be forced to take some kind of escalation option. I hope that makes sense.

Q: Awesome. So my follow-up question is about our international partners. Are there — looking ahead, is there kind of a way in which they would be integrated and there (would be ?) sort of a — a level of integration that would sliding scale, as you might have it, depending on what the scenario is? Or how would that work?

GEN. VANHERCK: Thanks for bringing that up because I didn’t address that. But we actually had partners — our allies and partners play in GIDE 3. So they’re already in with us.

Going forward, as the secretary has said, integrated deterrence is crucial. And integrated deterrence not only relies on all levers of national influence that we have here in the United States but it also relies on a network of allies and partners, which is our asymmetric advantage globally, in my mind.

And so absolutely, they have to be part of this. They have to be brought in. I met with the Supreme Allied Commander Transformation General Lanata as well. And they see it the same way. They’re encouraged by where we’re going. They’re all in with his hat as well from a NATO perspective. I think that is crucial.

From my homeland defense design — and I — I already alluded to this a little bit. You know, I don’t want to be shooting down cruise missiles over the National Capital Region or in our — in our country.

I believe the best way to keep a safe homeland is to have that network of allies and partners — that integrated deterrence that Secretary Austin talks about — and with my fellow combatant commands to have a global and all-domain picture to create deterrence and focus on competition.

But if required, the way you defend the homeland is, prior to that threat becoming a threat to the homeland, you give options to our senior leaders to negate that, whether that be through deterrence, de-escalating, or — if required — defeating.

STAFF: Lara, Politico.

Q: Hey, (Marty ?). Thanks, General, for doing this. I wanted to ask two questions, one on this experiment. Can you tell me — can you provide us any detail on upcoming experiments? I think this is third one. Is there a fourth one planned and when is that happening?

And then, it’s sort of off topic, but hoping you can answer some questions about the COVID response, as NORTHCOM the coordinator for that — that response, I believe.

Can you tell us whether you anticipate mandating the troops get vaccinated? And sort of following on that, if the — if the federal government mandates the vaccine, can you explain whether the troops and DOD civilians are automatically included in that mandate?

Thank you.

GEN. VANHERCK: Okay, thanks, Lara.

First on your question, certainly we’re looking to the future and what a Global Information Dominance Experiment 4 would look like. We haven’t scheduled it.

I’ll figure out the way forward after we meet today with the — at the out brief and I talk to the deputy and the vice chairman in the near future on the way forward. That, kind of, ties back to my overarching question — or comments earlier about the future of fielding this and the way forward. But we look forward to moving the ball down the field.

With regards to COVID, first I can tell you that I’m really proud of United States Northern Command, our team, all of the department for our response.

You know, we had over 20,000 personnel respond across over the last 15, 16 months. Providing support to the lead federal agencies in their response, whether that be from repatriating citizens that were coming from overseas, the cruise ships as you remember, embedding into hospitals, and providing nearly 5 million vaccines across the nation. So I’m proud of that.

With regards to your policy questions, I’m aware of the reports on the street. I’ll defer to OSD on the specific policy on mask mandate and wearing. That’s not my call.

I will tell you though, I’m incredibly proud of what our teammates here at the United States Northern Command and NORAD have done. We’re nearly 90 percent vaccinated in our headquarters. That’s significant, 90 percent. Okay?

When you look across the nation, the vaccine works. If you look hospitalization rates, you look at death rates right now from COVID the vast majority — high percentages are form unvaccinated.

And so, I’m encouraged by that. I’ll defer to policy on the mask wear. CDC obviously will get a piece of that and the department. I have ultimate confidence they’ll put out health protection guidance. And we’ll follow that policy.

Q: So I wasn’t actually asking about the mask mandate. I was asking about a vaccine mandate for — for troops. And I understand if you can’t get ahead of any announcements. But can you say that — if there is a mandate for federal workers, does that mean that U.S. troops and DOD civilians are automatically included in that or would that be a different discussion?

GEN. VANHERCK: Lara, I don’t know from my combatant command position. I’m — my awareness on this is probably just what yours is — what I’ve read in the media.

We’ll see what the president comes out with as far as direction and what that direction is to the department, and I’ll salute smartly to Secretary Austin’s guidance, and we’ll move out. I will tell you, I’ll go back to my comments. The vaccine works. We continue to encourage people to — to take the vaccine, moving forward.

STAFF: Okay, (Anson ?), Asashi Shimbun. Might have lost him.

(Jonathan, DOD News ?).

All right, Abraham Mahshie.

Q: Thank you, sir.

I wonder if you could detail any of the challenges or lessons learned from this experiment. And also, how did you work with INDOPACOM during the experiment?

GEN. VANHERCK: Yeah, so INDOPACOM — I’ll address the second — was absolutely all-in and a great partner in this experiment. We did focus to the West this time. I will tell you that. And INDOPACOM was critical to being part of the overall solution.

As far as — remind me the first one. I should —

Q: Challenges and lessons learned.

GEN. VANHERCK: Challenges, so challenges. Let me just talk real quick about that. So I — I think some of the challenges — we first have to have secure network and backbone to ride on. And so CYBERCOM understands that, National Security Agency — everybody understands that. So going forward, the I.T. infrastructure has to be secure and reliable to execute future data and information capability. So I think that’s something we have to focus on.

I also think that we need to build confidence and understanding of A.I. and machine learning across not only the department, but within Congress and the American people to ensure they understand that machines aren’t making decisions. We’re not relying on computers to take us to create deterrence options or defeat options.

I do think a challenge is that we have to work simultaneously while we build the bike while we ride it, if you will, is to work in the policy aspect and the law aspect, where what we don’t want to do is field capabilities, and the policy and the laws have not kept up with the capabilities that we have, or there’s a lack of competence in the capabilities, or trust, more importantly, with the American people and Congress, and within the department.

So those are things that we’ll continue to work. I’m heavily-engaged when I do my posture hearings and talking to the congressional members on the committees about the — the future of data and information.

Q: When you say policy keeping up, can you be more specific?

GEN. VANHERCK: Policy with regards to the use of artificial intelligence, machine learning to ensure that the data-sharing is available. So for example, in the intelligence communities, you know, historically, we’ve taken that intelligence. We’ve allowed an analyst to pore over that for days, sometimes, before we made that intelligence available. We may have to make that intelligence available sooner in the future by sharing the raw data, the real-time data, and allowing machines to look at that data, things that today, analyst may do. The machine can take a look and tell you exactly how many cars are in a parking lot, or how many airplanes are parked on a ramp, or if the submarine’s getting ready to leave, or if a missile’s going to launch. Where that may have taken days before, or hours, today, it can take seconds or less than minutes. Those are policy issues that we’ll have to sort through and build trust and confidence.

Q: Thank you, sir.

Q: Thanks. This is a question that — that might annoy you. When you go about this cloud environment, the point of the JEDI contract was to move the department away from a federation of little, tiny clouds that didn’t connect well, had bad APIs, to a cloud environment that represented, like, best of what was available in industry, so really, large — a — a coherent cloud environment on par with Amazon, Google or Microsoft. For this experiment, did you use a — a large, coherent, singular cloud environment, or maybe a multi-cloud environment of two large clouds, or was it a multi-cloud environment of lots of little clouds, all stitched together?

GEN. VANHERCK: I don’t that information, but I am not the technical expert on this. I would tell you, I think there’s multiple clouds. I’m agnostic to how we do this, candidly. Ultimately, these capabilities, as long as there’s a cloud to share information that can accept that data and information, the tools that we can utilize for A.I. and M.L. can be applied, and then you can share that data. But I — I don’t have those. I’m — I’m sorry. I don’t have that technical data.

Q: Thank you.

STAFF: All right, sir, over to you for closing comments.

GEN. VANHERCK: Okay, great. Hey — hey, thanks for being here, everybody. I appreciate your time. I’d love to have a — a room full. I think we have an important message at NORAD and NORTHCOM: Defending our homelands is an absolutely noble mission that we do each and every day, and providing support to our civil authorities and the people of our nation, so I think that’s — that’s about as noble as it gets.

You know, I’m really encouraged with where the secretary’s going with the integrated deterrence as he continues to talking about that. I think we — we must shift away from focusing on conflict and create deterrence during competition. I think that’s where the secretary’s going, and that competition involves all levels of national influence. It involves our allies and partners, and it involves all the combatant commands on a daily basis.

My homeland defense design is set up perfect for that, and this experiment, Global Information Dominance Experiment and the capabilities feed right into that to give the secretary exactly what he needs to have that global integrated deterrence, and what our combatant commanders need to create those deterrence options in day-to-day competition, de-escalation options in crisis, and if we have to fight, defeat options in conflict.

So I appreciate your time.

Strategic Culture Foundation – The US will continue to confront China; chances of explosion are rising

Brian Cloughley

August 3, 2021

U.S. provocations in the East are likely to continue and only Beijing knows how much more it will take before there is an explosion.

In July there were senior representatives of the Washington Administration bouncing about the globe like a bunch of ping-pong balls, lecturing in one place, suborning in another and announcing everywhere that the U.S. wants a “Rules-Based International Order”, as Secretary of State Blinken told China last March.

Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin was one of the bouncing balls, and before arriving in Vietnam stopped off in Singapore where on July 27 he declared “We will not flinch when our interests are threatened. Yet we do not seek confrontation.” On the same day, the British aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth (18 U.S.-supplied problem-ridden F-35 strike aircraft, 8 of them British, 10 U.S. Marine Corps), arrived at Singapore en route for the South China Sea to confront any Chinese forces it might meet. (Certainly, the UK carrier group is a joke that could not fight its way out of a paper bag, but it’s the presence that is intended to send the message.) Next day, when Austin arrived in Vietnam, the guided-missile destroyer USS Benfold trailed its coat in the Taiwan Strait in what the U.S. Navy called a “routine” transit that “demonstrates the U.S. commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific.”

As can be seen on the site Marine Traffic, the Taiwan Strait is packed all day and night with transiting commercial ships from countless countries, and the right of passage is guaranteed. There is no need whatever for any U.S. guided missile destroyer to “demonstrate freedom and openness.” It was obvious that the Benfold — the seventh U.S. warship to transit the Strait so far this year — had been sent to attempt to provoke China to take action.

Washington has been open about its aggressive China policy, and the State Department’s official notification is that “Strategic competition is the frame through which the United States views its relationship with the People’s Republic of China (PRC). The United States will address its relationship with the PRC from a position of strength in which we work closely with our allies and partners to defend our interests and values.” The embrace of challenge could not be clearer, and the Defence Department fully agrees, declaring that U.S. National Defence Strategy is “To restore America’s competitive edge by blocking global rivals Russia and China from challenging the U.S. and our allies” and “To keep those rivals from throwing the current international order out of balance.” In other words, so far as Washington is concerned, U.S. global hegemony is here to stay because it is regarded as beneficial for the world — and above all for America.

But there are some countries that would disagree, including, quite understandably, the People’s Republic of China which objects to such condescending policy statements as “When it is in our interest, the United States will conduct results-oriented diplomacy with China on shared challenges such as climate change and global public health crises.” The world needs diplomacy, not tub-thumping policies that confine international negotiations to national interests, and it was regrettable that one of the bouncing balls visited China to deliver yet another lecture on how that country’s government should behave.

It had been hoped that the visit to China by Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman might open some doors to constructive dialogue, but such was not to be. On July 25-26, as the State Department later announced, “the Deputy Secretary and State Councillor Wang had a frank and open discussion about a range of issues, demonstrating the importance of maintaining open lines of communication between our two countries.” Ms Sherman, according to the State Department, “underscored that the United States welcomes the stiff competition between our countries . . .” but this sort of platitude is entirely at variance with the overall tenor of her presentation to State Councillor Wang and Vice Foreign Minister Xie Feng.

As reported by the New York Times, she was mega-critical of China on counts of alleged human rights abuses and “also raised China’s demands over Taiwan, its military operations in the South China Sea, and the accusations last week by the United States and other nations that China’s Ministry of State Security was behind the hacking of Microsoft email systems and possibly other cyberattacks.” She declared that “This is very serious — that the Ministry of State Security would assist criminals to hack Microsoft and potentially others,” adding that “many” countries had joined the United States in saying that “such behaviour is absolutely irresponsible, reckless and has no place in our world.”

Ms Sherman had of course been told what to say at the meeting, presumably approved at the highest level, and it is apparent that Washington had no intention whatever of engaging in meaningful dialogue but was intent on showering China with insults.

It is yet to be understood in Washington that insults, sanctions and aggressive military manoeuvres do not have positive effects on the nations against whom they are directed. They invariably result in anger, resentment and retaliation of some sort. It is as yet unknown for retaliation to take the form of direct military action, because Washington’s targets are generally so weak as to be incapable of such riposte, but in the case of modern China, U.S. pressure and Chinese strength are rising to the extent that this is now a distinct possibility.

On July 28 the newly-appointed Chinese ambassador to the U.S., Qin Gang, said he believes “the door of China-U.S. relations, which is already open, cannot be closed” but no matter Beijing’s good intentions there are many in Washington who want to slam that door because they are confident that the national policy of “blocking global rivals Russia and China from challenging the U.S. and our allies” will succeed.

But it won’t.

During the disastrous visit by Deputy Secretary Sherman to China, Vice Foreign Minister Xie Feng said bluntly that the Biden administration’s policies are nothing but a “thinly veiled attempt to contain and suppress China,” which was an extension of Foreign Minister Wang Yi’s cautionary statement that “The United States always wants to exert pressure on other countries by virtue of its own strength, thinking that it is superior to others. However, I would like to tell the U.S. side clearly that there has never been a country in this world that is superior to others, nor should there be, and China will not accept any country claiming to be superior to others. If the United States has not learned how to get along with other countries on an equal footing by now, then it is our responsibility, together with the international community, to give the U.S. a good tutorial in this regard.”

And if the U.S. does not moderate its policy of outright and usually arrogant confrontation in every sphere it is likely that the tutorial will begin very soon. Washington forgets that no matter how much some segments of the Chinese population may disagree with aspects of their government’s policies and performance, they are a proud people who strongly object to their country being insulted and treated as a maverick obstacle to world development. It seems that U.S. provocations in the East will continue and only Beijing knows how much more it will take before there is an explosion.

Waco – A New Revelation – Neo-Liberal State War Machine’s Assault on Christianity and Constitutional Freedoms

The portrayal of the Branch Dividians and David Koresh by the establishment media cast them as the belligerents in the Waco standoff. Hundreds of thousands if not millions of newscasts always paint a picture of David Koresh forcing his religious group into suicide. By inferno.

The reality is that the government, via the ATF, chose to make a harsh example of what happens when a group of people with an in-group religious preference acquire firearms that are outside the scope of approval by the coming of the Globohomogayplex, Neo-Liberal, State/Media apparatus.

What’s striking here is:

  • The true origins of the inferno (Delta)
  • The conflict of interest in negotiations (FBI)
  • Fucking CHUCK SCHUMER (this man has got to GO…it’s like 100 years later and he’s still in office)

Military personnel plan to RESIGN if Covid vaccines mandated

By Dr Eddy Betterman Several members of the military have informed Republican Rep. Thomas Massie of Kentucky that they are planning to resign if the government mandates Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccines for the armed forces. In response to the objections of servicemen and women, Massie introduced HR 3860. This bill would “prohibit any mandatory requirement that a […]

Military personnel plan to RESIGN if Covid vaccines mandated

US Troops Die For World Domination, Not Freedom – Caitlin Johnstone

US Troops Die For World Domination, Not Freedom – Caitlin Johnstone
By: via Geopolitical Conflict