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The Pentagon’s “2015 Strategy” for Ruling the World
Here Come the Daisycutters
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On Wednesday, the Pentagon released its 2015 National Military Strategy, a 24-page blueprint for ruling the world through military force. While the language in the report is subtler and less incendiary than similar documents in the past, the determination to unilaterally pursue US interests through extreme violence remains the cornerstone of the new strategy. Readers will not find even a hint of remorse in the NMS for the vast destruction and loss of life the US caused in countries that posed not the slightest threat to US national security. Instead, the report reflects the steely resolve of its authors and elite constituents to continue the carnage and bloodletting until all potential rivals have been killed or eliminated and until such time that Washington feels confident that its control over the levers of global power cannot be challenged.

As one would expect, the NMS conceals its hostile intentions behind the deceptive language of “national security”. The US does not initiate wars of aggression against blameless states that possess large quantities of natural resources. No. The US merely addresses “security challenges” to “protect the homeland” and to “advance our national interests.” How could anyone find fault with that, after all, wasn’t the US just trying to bring peace and democracy to Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and now Syria?

In the Chairman’s Forward, Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey attempts to prepare the American people for a future of endless war:

“Future conflicts will come more rapidly, last longer, and take place on a much more technically challenging battlefield. … We must be able to rapidly adapt to new threats while maintaining comparative advantage over traditional ones … the application of the military instrument of power against state threats is very different than the application of military power against non state threats. We are more likely to face prolonged campaigns than conflicts that are resolved quickly … that control of escalation is becoming more difficult and more important.” (Document: 2015 U.S. National Military Strategy, USNI News)

War, war and more war. This is the Pentagon’s vision of the future. Unlike Russia or China which have a plan for an integrated EU-Asia free trade zone (Silk Road) that will increase employment, improve vital infrastructure, and raise living standards, the US sees only death and destruction ahead. Washington has no strategy for the future, no vision of a better world. There is only war; asymmetrical war, technological war, preemptive war. The entire political class and their elite paymasters unanimously support global rule through force of arms. That is the unavoidable meaning of this document. The United States intends to maintain its tenuous grip on global power by maximizing the use of its greatest asset; its military.

And who is in the military’s gunsights? Check out this excerpt from an article in Defense News:

“The strategy specifically calls out Iran, Russia and North Korea as aggressive threats to global peace. It also mentions China, but notably starts that paragraph by saying the Obama administration wants to “support China’s rise and encourage it to become a partner for greater international security,” continuing to thread the line between China the economic ally and China the regional competitor.

“None of these nations are believed to be seeking direct military conflict with the United States or our allies,” the strategy reads. “Nonetheless, they each pose serious security concerns which the international community is working to collectively address by way of common policies, shared messages, and coordinated action.” (Pentagon Releases National Military Strategy, Defense News)

Did you catch that last part? “None of these nations are believed to be seeking direct military conflict with the United States or our allies. Nevertheless, they each pose serious security concerns.”

In other words, none of these countries wants to fight the United States, but the United States wants to fight them. And the US feels it’s justified in launching a war against these countries because, well, because they either control vast resources, have huge industrial capacity, occupy an area of the world that interests the US geopolitically, or because they simply want to maintain their own sovereign independence which, of course, is a crime. According to Dempsey, any of these threadbare excuses are sufficient justification for conflict mainly because they “pose serious security concerns” for the US, which is to say they undermine the US’s dominant role as the world’s only superpower.

The NMS devotes particular attention to Russia, Washington’s flavor-of-the-month enemy who had the audacity to defend its security interests following a State Department-backed coup in neighboring Ukraine. For that, Moscow must be punished. This is from the report:

“Some states, however, are attempting to revise key aspects of the international order and are acting in a manner that threatens our national security interests. While Russia has contributed in select security areas, such as counternarcotics and counterterrorism, it also has repeatedly demonstrated that it does not respect the sovereignty of its neighbors and it is willing to use force to achieve its goals. Russia’s military actions are undermining regional security directly and through proxy forces. These actions violate numerous agreements that Russia has signed in which it committed to act in accordance with international norms.” (2015 NMS)

Russia is an evildoer because Russia refused to stand by while the US toppled the Ukrainian government, installed a US stooge in Kiev, precipitated a civil war between the various factions, elevated neo Nazis to positions of power in the security services, plunged the economy into insolvency and ruin, and opened a CIA headquarters in the Capital to run the whole shooting match. This is why Russia is bad and must be punished.

But does that mean Washington is seriously contemplating a war with Russia?

Here’s an excerpt from the document that will help to clarify the matter:

“For the past decade, our military campaigns primarily have consisted of operations against violent extremist networks. But today, and into the foreseeable future, we must pay greater attention to challenges posed by state actors. They increasingly have the capability to contest regional freedom of movement and threaten our homeland. Of particular concern are the proliferation of ballistic missiles, precision strike technologies, unmanned systems, space and cyber capabilities, and weapons of mass destruction (WMD) technologies designed to counter U.S. military advantages and curtail access to the global commons.” (2015 NMS)

It sounds to me like the Washington honchos have already made up their minds. Russia is the enemy, therefore, Russia must be defeated. How else would one “counter a revisionist state” that “threatens our homeland”?

Why with Daisy Cutters, of course. Just like everyone else.

The NMS provides a laundry list of justifications for launching wars against (imaginary) enemies of the US. The fact is, the Pentagon sees ghosts around every corner. Whether the topic is new technologies, “shifting demographics” or cultural differences; all are seen as a potential threat to US interests, particularly anything related to the “competition for resources.” In this skewed view of reality, one can see how the invasion of Iraq was justified on the grounds that Saddam’s control of Iraq’s massive oil reserves posed a direct challenge to US hegemony. Naturally, Saddam had to be removed and over a million people killed to put things right and return the world to a state of balance. This is the prevailing view of the National Military Strategy, that is, that whatever the US does is okay, because its the US.

Readers shouldn’t expect to find something new in the NMS. This is old wine in new bottles. The Pentagon has merely updated the Bush Doctrine while softening the rhetoric. There’s no need to scare the living daylights out of people by talking about unilateralism, preemption, shrugging off international law or unprovoked aggression. Even so, everyone knows that United States is going to do whatever the hell it wants to do to keep the empire intact. The 2015 National Military Strategy merely confirms that sad fact.

MIKE WHITNEY lives in Washington state. He is a contributor to Hopeless: Barack Obama and the Politics of Illusion (AK Press). Hopeless is also available in a Kindle edition. He can be reached at [email protected].

(Republished from Counterpunch by permission of author or representative)
• Category: Foreign Policy • Tags: American Military, Russia 
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  1. tom says:

    Yep, this self-destructive evil US Empire, is so desperate to hold on to its hegemony, that if it doesn’t succeed as the uni-power, then it will take down the rest of the world with it if it has to.

    The neocons under Obama that has flourished, Will be even more dominant under a further sinking Empire. That means world War three is even closer to a certainty, than it was before.

  2. They need to keep the money flowing. This is a growing enterprise that requires more scams than the war on terror. A country that wanted to to maintain its unipolar moment wouldn’t waste defense money like the US does and would deal with the corruption and economic issues which plague it. It doesn’t matter if the military technology created works or not anymore. The important thing is that someone made some money! That’s the attitude the US political class has. These lucrative strategies aim to unites the people in the US, Europe, Japan, and South Korea under the US thumb (or is it the war profiteers and the rest of the world “free world+Israel+Arab tyrannies” to keep the American people under their thumb). It is hard sometimes to figure out who is using who more: the hitman or the client? The cost besides loss of life and economic loss is pushing the use of violence as a means to an end on a global scale. The last thing the US should want is for other countries that can be existential threats to the US to be more aggressive. I wonder if a nuclear war breaks out between the US, China, and Russia where will our political elites be? If they are pushing for confrontation then they must think that it won’t affect them. That this is some kind of large scale tribal war that is inconsequential like the ones band societies engage in.

  3. I’m sorry, I just don’t believe anyone possessed of the minimal amount of intelligence that it takes to rise to the top of the heap in the Pentagon is stupid enough to believe that we, or anyone, can “rule the world”.

    As is said of the men meeting a bear in the woods, it is not a matter of outrunning the bear, just don’t be the slowest one. Neither we nor anyone is going to rule this world, but there will be survivors if we can avoid an all-out nuclear exchange.

  4. “I just don’t believe anyone possessed of the minimal amount of intelligence that it takes to rise to the top of the heap in the Pentagon is stupid enough to believe that we, or anyone, can ‘rule the world’.”

    You’re judging them by your own standards. Successful bureaucratic infighters engaged in careerism have the talents that make them good at ruthless backstabbing and being dishonestly obsequious in turn as necessary to rise to the top, which confirms them in their belief that they can indeed “rule the world.”

    They are warning us to expect long conflicts. Military force hasn’t worked so far, so they are committing us to “staying the course” just in case it ever does. If it doesn’t in their lifetime, no matter, there’s always the revolving door to a lucrative munitions contractor executive position after full benefits early retirement. This is banal, but not stupid.

    You’re right, but now “go tell it to the Marines.” Steady as she goes.

    • Replies: @Bill Jones
  5. Seraphim says:

    “We shall be as a city upon a hill, the eyes of all people are upon us.” John Winthrope

    “In my mind it was a tall proud city built on rocks stronger than oceans, wind-swept, God-blessed, and teeming with people of all kinds living in harmony and peace, a city with free ports that hummed with commerce and creativity, and if there had to be city walls, the walls had doors and the doors were open to anyone with the will and the heart to get here. That’s how I saw it and see it still….” Ronald Reagan

    “America remains the indispensable nation”…”there are times when America, and only America, can make a difference between war and peace, between freedom and repression”… Bill Clinton

    “Like generations before us, we have a calling from beyond the stars to stand for freedom. This is the everlasting dream of America…” G.W. Bush

    “As Ronald Reagan emphasized, America is a shining city upon a hill whose beacon light guides freedom-loving people everywhere.” Paul M. Rodriguez

    Can America let that beacon light be extinguished? How would the freedom-loving peoples everywhere be able to walk in the darkness?

  6. Markus says:

    Oh gawd. Only the most vivid imagination could guess what the rank amateur occupying the presidency has up his sleeve next.

  7. Flower says:

    I’m sure the report is a typical military camel that was originally specified as a horse. I would point out to the report’s authors that a. it is common knowledge what happens to “plans” upon the firing of the first bullet, and b. shouldn’t they be concerned with finishing the wars already started before getting all hard for more wars? Some folks are just slow learners, I guess.
    If there is anything that abolishes any thoughts of a military victory, now or ever again, it’s the bloated, gutless, thieving, lying, truely worthless General Officer corp of the US military, no matter how many reports are crapped out. Pentagon, you have spent 10 years in Afghanistan and are still unable to defeat a late stone aged group of goat herders, with the only accomplishment you have managed is to triple the heroin harvest. Can you imagine the thrashing the US military would suffer if they had to go up against a military force a bit more modern, like, say, the Vatican Swiss Guards?

    • Replies: @Kiza
  8. what is it with the irish and their compulsion to fight and lie about it?

  9. pyrrhus says:

    We are ruled by monsters. The good news, if you can call it that, is that we are running out of 3d world countries to safely obliterate. Also, US conventional forces have been significantly degraded by the stupidity, looting and PC enforcing of the Pentagon, so we are in no condition to attack Russia or China, or any of their friends….

  10. Kiza says:

    Although I agree with you in general, I would like to point out that the main problem of the US military is that it is a mercenary army which does not fight for any valid human principle. It is getting harder and harder to find sufficient number of morons like Pat Tillman to go and die for the lies of the US elite. Tillman appears to have woken up about the US imperial wars, but too late. He could even have been killed by “friendly fire” just because he shook off his delusions and could have become a threat to the recruitment he was the biggest benefit to.

    But, if the US was exposed to a real military threat and the US people were fighting for their own homes and their own families, I am absolutely sure that the outcome of such war would be totally opposite to these recent military debacles.

    Therefore, the problem of every empire in the history had been the same as of the US empire now – how to motivate its killers to fight like lions when those killers are fighting for a scholarship or a US citizenship, whilst in reality they are fighting solely for the benefit of the looting US elite.

    • Replies: @rod1963
    , @Flower
  11. rod1963 says:

    You’re blaming the wrong people.

    Many of the men who do serve aren’t morons. The ones I’ve worked with were a lot smarter than your typical white liberal with a social studies degree that mommy and daddy bought for them.

    Many are there because of the economic situations prevented them from finding decent jobs or affording college out of high school. Something that is directly attributed to both Democrats and Republicans who helped destroy our manufacturing sector in the name of greed.

    Bad economy = good recruitment numbers for the military.

    Tillman joined out of patriotism, but was subsequently murdered by his squadmates for some reason(s) yet unknown. Probably a combination of jealousy and not being a mouth breather. Reportedly they were amazed that he read books for enjoyment and didn’t like him questioning certain things. Tillman would still be alive today if he hadn’t become a Ranger. It got so bad for his brother(who was also a Ranger) he had to leave the Army because he suspected that the Rangers were setting him up to be killed.

    The blame for the wars lays solely with the political class – the Clinton’s, Bush’s, the career senators and congress pukes who rubber stamp every military involvement in the world. Often against the will of the people.

    You realize that the political class had to use every propaganda trick in the book to get the U.S. involved in attacking Iraq both times. They employed PR firms, flooded the MSM outlets with sock puppets who repeated the government line.

    Blaming Iraq for 9/11 and that Saddam was a dire threat to the West was the propaganda trick of the Millennium then selling the people lies we’d be welcomed with roses instead of hot lead and we’d be home in six months.

    • Replies: @Flower
    , @Bill Jones
    , @Kiza
  12. Flower says:

    I almost agree with you; however, your statement:

    “But, if the US was exposed to a real military threat and the US people were fighting for their own homes and their own families, I am absolutely sure that the outcome of such war would be totally opposite to these recent military debacles.”

    That sound like one of those “When the SHTF I’m gonna….” kind of answers, to which I usually reply, Son, if you don’t think the S has hit the fan by now, what is it going to take?” What your reply is actually saying is that despite all of the propaganda and BS and outright lies being spewed by the ninnies in the Pentagon, the American people really know when they are truly at risk, to which I say, “BS!, the American people know only what they hear on Ophra. If the S hasn’t hit the fan by now, it ain’t ever going to.” Don’t ask what’s wrong with the Military, the Military is what is wrong with the Military. The Pentagon has so debased itself that no one believes anything those aholes have to say. The slimeballs calling themselves “Generals” cannot account for (what they admit to) 8 TRILLION dollars!!!! and you want me to believe that they can successfully execute a war? Against another group of human beings?!? Simply because their backs are up against a wall? C’mon man, just the fact that you can put together a cogent sentence tells me that you are smarter than that.

    The point is, the Pentagon and their star bedecked fairies, have so ruined the American attitude toward the military that I doubt you could find enough American citizens who would even remotely consider defending the Reich. Say, wasn’t it the US Military, lead by the weenies-with-stars, who went to war in Iraq without the proper equipment, like armor for Humvees, and the only answer the soldiers could get was, “Yeah? So?” (Dumbfuk Rumsfeld said it more coyly, of course, “We go to war with the army we’ve got, not the army we want.”) The military is scrapping the bottom of the barrel for recruits, even forcing current, patriotic, soldiers to do 4, 5, 6, etc tours of duty. And what do those star wearing losers in the Pentagon worry about? Why they’re worried about where their soldiers are to be allowed to stick their dicks! We are worried about the fag General who shows up with his “husband” and how this somehow enlightens the universe, or something.

    If the Chinese (or Luxembourg, or Scotland, or Tahiti, or…) were to invade California, say, the vast majority of Americans would shrug, “Yeah? So? Let me know how it comes out.” Remember, you can’t declare war on the __________ (fill in the blank) as that would be discrimination.

    But you can bet the spineless Officer Corps of the US Military will come down on protesting Americans like stink on S.

  13. Flower says:

    “The blame for the wars lays solely with the political class ” – you are wrong. The Wehrmacht, under Hitler, were required to give an oath to Germany AND Adolph. What was the oath you took when you entered the military? Do you remember? I don’t recall any requirement to do what the monkey in the White House decrees, and certainly not without question. I remember the oath being something about protecting and defending the Constitution. When the Political Class soiled themselves in anticipation of going to another war over nothing, the gutless yellow turds in the Pentagon didn’t raise a finger. Wait, there was one guy. A General named Eric Shinseki tried to tell your Political Class the truth about what a war in Iraq would cost, remember what happened to him? He got fired. Oh, excuse me, he “retired”. How many of the gutless PsOS brother officers came to his defense? Not one.
    No, Rod, you either forgot or never noticed, but the military leadership in THIS country has become just another part of the Political Class that you are so rightly concerned about.

    • Replies: @Johnny F. Ive
  14. @Flower

    There are careerist like Petraeus. Plenty are bought out and join the industrial/media side of the military where they use their stars to argue for more co$tly wars. I remember Chalmers Johnson in a talk (on youtube somewhere) mention that he was aware of senior military officers considering a military coup if the US went to war with Iran. If they did that he argued that “the Constitution would be a dead letter.”

  15. @Fran Macadam

    The purpose of the wars is to have the wars.
    The Military Industrial Security Complex is second only to the Fed as a mechanism of wealth transfer from the middle class to the oligarchs.

  16. @rod1963

    You’ve got some serious cognitive dissonance going on here, kiddo.

    “Many of the men who do serve aren’t morons. The ones I’ve worked with were a lot smarter than your typical white liberal with a social studies degree that mommy and daddy bought for them.”

    Is not really congruent with

    ” murdered by his squadmates for some reason(s) yet unknown. Probably a combination of jealousy and not being a mouth breather. Reportedly they were amazed that he read books for enjoyment and didn’t like him questioning certain things. ”

  17. And this differs how from the policy of the U.S. Goobermint after the War of Northern Aggression when the Army did its best to eradicate the Plains Indians? It’s what we do, we can’t help ourselves.

  18. Sean T says:

    Great bunch of comments on this thread! For my two cents, I would add that this “American” Empire is doomed. America couldn’t sustain an automobile industry, but somehow we’re going to control the oil wells and pipelines all over the world? This isn’t going to work.

  19. denk says:

    Massachusetts Senator Henry Cabot Lodge , 1895
    *We have a record of conquest, colonization and expansion unequaled by any people in the Nineteenth century. We are not about to be curbed now.*

  20. Jason says:

    The class of people who run an empire never have any loyalty to the actual founding stock of the nation from which that empire sprung.

    Alexander the Great, the Caesars, the many European Kings … they all took sides with foreign subjects against their own native countrymen.

    We see the same thing happening with our current parasitic American elite.

  21. Kiza says:

    I do not think we have a major disagreement, at least I agree with almost everything you wrote. Especially that when the elite wrecked the economy by outsourcing jobs and ripped off the society through Too Big To Fail, then the only job in town was the Smedley’s Racket. But you may have missed my point a little, I was not focused on Tillman, his was a side show, the Empire is the main show. Nevertheless, how much brain does it take to understand that you are not going to find any super secret, super powerful, super organized group (as Al Qaeda was falsely presented) which hates the US in a stone age country such as Afghanistan? Even 10 minutes on Wikipedia would have dispelled any such notion. The US in Afghanistan is like aliens capable of interstellar travel attacking the earthlings.

    You are absolutely right that it is the political class which is to blame, not the poor grunt fighting for a scholarship to pull himself out of the social underclass.

    But you are incorrect that the lies about Iraq were “the propaganda trick of the Millennium”. There was virtually no war in the 19th and 20th century which the US fought which was not based on big lies, each and every war. If in doubt please consider opening Oliver Stone’s and Howard Zinn’s Untold History of the United States.

    It is really hard to know who did 911, but I am personally quite sure that it ain’t a kidney patient from Afghani caves.

    Finally, when I wrote that US people would fight truly for their own homes and families, I did not even think of a mercenary army of Pentagon. The purpose of this was just to emphasize that none of the wars the US has fought in the past, even less any wars the US will fight in the future were/will be the good wars. And this is exactly why it is so hard for the US to win. Also, how many people realize that the good war was the one the Vietnamese, the Afghanis and the Iraqis fought against the US, because they were fighting for their homes and their families against a foreign invader. To obfuscate this simple fact, movies such as Hurt Locker, American Sniper etc etc are being made.

    • Replies: @Sean
  22. LarryS says:

    July 4, 1821
    “Wherever the standard of freedom and independence has been or shall be unfurled, there will her [America] heart, her benedictions and her prayers be. But she goes not abroad in search of monsters to destroy. She is the well-wisher to the freedom and independence of all. She is the champion and vindicator only of her own. She will recommend the general cause, by the countenance of her voice, and the benignant sympathy of her example.
    She well knows that by once enlisting under other banners than her own, were they even the banners of foreign independence, she would involve herself, beyond the power of extrication, in all the wars of interest and intrigue, of individual avarice, envy, and ambition, which assume the colors and usurp the standard of freedom. The fundamental maxims of her policy would insensibly change from liberty to force.” John Quincy Adams

  23. Sean says:

    Oliver Stone was/is a movie director (honestly don’t know what he’s up to anymore, last movie I saw was JFK) and Howard Zinn seems to appeal quite heavily to leftist rhetoric (and I had enough fill listening to his quotes about all the bad things whites do from my required social science classes in university).

    I’m serious, is there any actual scholarly work done on Mideast history of the time you mentioned?

    • Replies: @Kiza
  24. Kiza says:

    I am sorry that I cannot recommend any books. I consume books without remembering the title and the author, collecting any the revealing and insightful thoughts from them as gems to keep. My mention of Stone & Zinn’s book (or bovie, a book which came out of a TV series) was just because it was the only one I could remember.

    But I am also not clear exactly what you mean by “scholarly work done on Mideast history”. Is it the time of the two wars on Iraq that you are referring to? This is quite recent to have a reliable “scholarly work”.

    BTW, the most recent of Oliver Stone’s work is a long documentary/movie on Putin, which is still in production!

    • Replies: @Kiza
  25. Kiza says:

    Personally, I would consider John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt the ultimate US scholarly authority on the Middle East, any of their books are quite insightful, relatively objective and never pro-zionist.

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