. The task force will work quickly, drawing on civilian and military experts across the department to provide within the next few months recommendations to Secretary Austin on key priorities and decision points so that we can chart a strong path forward on China-related matters,” said Biden
Washington, February 11: US President Joe Biden on Wednesday announced the establishment of a new China task force that will recommend military strategies to the Pentagon to counter increasing challenges posed by Beijing. The task force has four months to develop recommendations for senior defense leaders.
The Task Force will provide a baseline assessment of department policies, programs and processes in regard to the challenge posed by China.
“Today I was briefed on a new DoD-wide China task force that Secretary Austin is standing up to look at our strategy and operational concepts, technology and force posture and so much more. The task force will work quickly, drawing on civilian and military experts across the department to provide within the next few months recommendations to Secretary Austin on key priorities and decision points so that we can chart a strong path forward on China-related matters,” said Biden while delivering remarks at the Pentagon.
The task force will be composed of civilian and military experts across the department and will need a whole government effort, bipartisan cooperation in Congress and strong alliances and partnerships, said the US President.
Austin and newly sworn in Deputy Secretary of Defense Kathleen H. Hicks called China the “pacing threat” for America in this era of strategic competition.
During his remarks, Biden said that the US needs to meet the growing challenges posed by China to keep peace and defend its interests in the Indo-Pacific and globally.
“China is seeking to overturn the current rules-based structure, which has benefitted all nations in the Indo-Pacific region. The United States and its allies seek to continue the free and open environment in the region. China is using all elements of national power to bend the nations to its will,” Biden said.
The United States is conducting freedom of navigation operations to ensure all nations can use international waterways and air routes. The U.S. is working with allies to improve policing of national borders and exclusive economic zones to ensure sovereignty.
“We need to take on the dangers and opportunities of emerging technologies, enhance our capabilities in cyberspace, ensure that we are positioned to lead a new era of competition from the deep sea to outer space, and we need to meet the growing challenges posed by China to keep peace and defend its interests in the Indo-Pacific and globally,” he said.
A China task force will study the military’s footprint in Asia, technology, intelligence, the role of allies and partnerships, and other areas of the strategy, administration officials said.
The Pentagon said in a fact sheet that the China Task Force will review high-priority matters related to Beijing, including bilateral defense relations, intelligence and US alliances and partnerships and issue recommendations within the next four months.The relations between the US and China have deteriorated sharply over the last year in wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, China’s efforts to curtail Hong Kong’s autonomy, and the US-China trade war.
Defense officials called the task force a “sprint effort” that will examine high-priority topics including strategy, operational concepts, technology and force structure, force posture and force management and intelligence. The task force will also examine U.S. alliances and partnerships and their impact on Sino-American relations and Pentagon (DoD) relations with China.
The 15-member task force will come from a wide swath of the department and include the Office of the Secretary of Defense staff, the Joint Staff, the services, the combatant commands and representatives from the intelligence community.
The task force will also speak with interagency partners to ensure the defense response is aligned with the whole-of-government approach toward China that the president wants.