After more than a decade of fighting lightly armed, irregular forces in Afghanistan and Iraq, U.S. forces face an increasing likelihood of combating more organized foes with heavier arms, a Defense analyst said.Interesting.
The next enemy could be a hybrid group such as the Islamic State or Hezbollah with effective anti-aircraft and anti-tank weaponry, or a “state” group such as Russian separatists in the Balkans armed with tanks and long-range rocket artillery, said David E. Johnson, a retired Army colonel and senior researcher with RAND Corporation.
“We haven't actually fought these kinds of units since Vietnam,” he said. “We haven't fought something like Russia since World War II.”
In a recent RAND report, “The Challenges of the ‘Now' and Their Implications for the U.S. Army,” Johnson identifies several areas such as artillery in which the United States has fallen behind Russia and China. The Russian long-range rocket artillery has greater reach than the U.S. version.
Though it's unlikely the Army would end up in a direct conflict with Russian or Chinese forces, it likely will face groups with their weaponry, he said.
It seems that what I've been screaming about for over two years is slowly turning into conventional wisdom.
Nice. But will HQMC pivot toward restoring the USMC combined arms team in time...or will we be stuck with this disjointed, tilted and ineffective bias toward aviation?
Don't listen to Neller or any of the talking heads at HQMC. Watch the budget. Spending requests will tell us all we need to know.