Pentagon makes China its top policy priority with several new classified programs

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U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin participates successful a quality briefing astatine the Pentagon May 6, 2021 successful Arlington, Virginia.

Alex Wong | Getty Images

WASHINGTON – Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin connected Wednesday directed the Pentagon to spot China and its subject build-up astatine the halfway of American defence policy.

The classified Pentagon-wide directive comes connected the heels of recommendations from a 23-member task unit aimed astatine assessing the U.S. military's China strategy.

The task force, unveiled by President Joe Biden during his archetypal sojourn arsenic commandant successful main to the Pentagon, includes representatives from the sister services, respective combatant commands, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the bureau of the caput of Defense and the quality community.

"This directive from the Secretary is yet astir getting the Department's location successful bid and ensuring that the section lives up to the stated prioritization of China arsenic the fig 1 pacing challenge," explained a elder Defense official, who spoke connected the information of anonymity up of the announcement.

Austin's directive comes arsenic the medication and lawmakers successful some parties ramp up initiatives to antagonistic China's planetary ambitions, from economical and commercialized argumentation to information concerns. The Senate connected Tuesday passed a sweeping tech and manufacturing measure aimed astatine curtailing China's expanding technological influence.

Through the directive unveiled Wednesday, the Pentagon volition measure U.S. alliances and partnerships, deterrence, operational concepts, emerging capabilities, aboriginal unit posture, exertion and civilian and subject workforce.

"Certainly China's power and its planetary capabilities are important with respect to its subject modernization and immoderate of its relationships astir the satellite and we, of course, took those into relationship but we were not assessing fiscal oregon economical policies," the authoritative said.

When pressed for much details, the authoritative added that the initiatives created by the directive volition mostly stay classified.

The hostility betwixt Beijing and Washington, the world's 2 largest economies, soared nether the Trump administration.

Biden has antecedently said that his medication was acceptable for "extreme competition" with China but that his attack would beryllium antithetic than his predecessor.

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