A new report published by the Pentagon has warned that the U.S. is at risk of losing the global battle for influence to authoritarian nations such as Russia and China.
A 150-page white paper, prepared for the Joint Chiefs of Staff and acquired by politico, says that Russia poses a particularly active threat to the U.S.-led world order. The document warns that America is underestimating Russian aggression and is not prepared to deal with the wide range of techniques used by it to undermine democracies worldwide.
The “Strategic Multilayer Assessment” suggests the U.S. is entering a new period of ideological competition with nations like Russia and China, who have rejected liberal democracy in favor of “authoritarian stability.”
But in this new struggle, the authors argue that America lacks a clear ideological message of the kind that carried it through the Cold War. Belinda Bragg, a research scientist for the NSI government consulting firm, wrote parts of the study. She said that the U.S. needs “to better articulate U.S. interests and strategy to both ourselves and others.”
Another contributor, Anna Borshchevskaya of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, added that domestic divisions are damaging efforts to create a new American identity. “We still have a story to tell but because we are so polarized and are doubting ourselves we have a narrative problem,” she told Politico. “Russia does not.”
The report detailed the methods Russia is using to undermine the U.S. and its traditional allies. Navy Rear Admiral Jeffrey Czerewko, the Joint Chiefs’ deputy director for global operations, listed “economic competition, influence campaigns, paramilitary actions, cyber intrusions, and political warfare,” all of which he expected to become more common.
Contributor Jason Werchan, a member of the U.S. European Command strategy division, wrote that malign Russian activities include “threatening other states militarily, or compromising their societies, economies, and governments by employing a range of means and methods to include propaganda, disinformation, and cultural, religious, and energy coercion.”
Alingment between Moscow and Beijing is cause for particular concern, the paper said. Presidents Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin have lauded closer the two neighbors, who could form a potent anti-American front.
“The world system, and America’s influence in it, would be completed upended if Moscow and Beijing aligned more closely,” Werchan suggested. The document also suggests steps that could undermine the relationship, such as sowing concern in Russia about China’s mammoth economic and infrastructure projects across the globe.
On Saturday, Manchester United announced the signing of England Under-21 international fullback Aaron Wan-Bissaka from Premier League side Crystal Palace in a £50m deal. Negotiations between the clubs have been taking place all week but the England star has finally become a Red Devil. The 21-year-old, who made his first-team debut for Palace last year, has agreed a five-year contract that will earn him up to £80,000 a week. United are paying £45m up front, making Wan-Bissaka the club’s fifth-biggest signing, behind Paul Pogba, Romelu Lukaku, Angel di Maria and Fred.
Photo Credit: Bleacher Reports
The former Eagles star broke Manchester United record even without stepping on the pitch by being the club’s most expensive defender in history after breaking Victor Lindelof’s record of £30.8 million.
United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer said of Wan-Bissaka: “Aaron is one of the best upcoming defenders in the Premier League. He has the right work ethic, talent and mentality to play for Manchester United and he fits exactly the type of player that we are looking to bring into the squad to help us improve and push on further. “Aaron is a young, hungry player and eager to learn and that’s important at his age. I am delighted he has signed with us and we look forward to continuing his tremendous development so far.”
Wan-Bissaka added: “It’s an unbelievable feeling and an honour to call myself a Manchester United player and something I know that only a small number of players have the privilege to say. “I can’t wait to get going and integrated into the squad. I will have a short break now after the European Championships but I’m looking forward to starting training with the manager and my new team-mates on the pre-season tour.”
It is yet to be decided when the youngster will join up with United for pre-season training since he has only recently ended his 2018-19 campaign. The senior United squad are due to reconvene on Monday and will fly to Australia to begin their summer tour the following week.
Wan-Bissaka, who has been on international duty this month at the European Under-21 Championship, joined Palace’s academy when he was 11. The defender was on £10,000 a week at Selhurst Park, the lowest-paid player in Palace’s first-team squad.
His transfer was delayed by final negotiations between the clubs, which ended with the Eagles securing a 10% sell-on clause if Wan-Bissaka leaves United for more than £50m.
“It’s an honour for me to play for this club. I can’t wait to get out there.” — Aaron wan-bissaka
Two unidentified men have been taken into custody by security agents after they turned up at a planned protest outside the Commonwealth of Nigeria Assembly(COZA), Abuja.
The church has come under nationwide interest since one of its members came out Friday to accuse Biodun Fatoyinbo, its lead preacher, of rape.
Busola Dakolo, the wife of the musician Timi, said she was raped by Mr fatoyimbo at age16 in Ilorin, Kwara State.
Mr Fatoyinbo has denied the
allegations and threatened a lawsuit.
A large segment of Nigerians on social media dismissed the preacher’s explanation and stood in solidarity with Mrs Dakolo, now a mother of three.