September 16, 2016
U.S. Army planners believe they may face war with a near-peer adversary sometime in the next five years. That probably means fighting Russia in Europe, but it doesn’t mean the Army has a full five years to prepare. It may mean war breaks out next year, as Moscow tests a new president. Unfortunately, the Army would probably lose such a war. First, the geography strongly favors Russian attackers. Second, after 15 years of fighting rag-tag insurgents, the Army is woefully unprepared. Third, much of the joint force might be sidelined, unable to support U.S. forces on the ground. Fourth, it isn’t so clear NATO allies will be committed to the fight. And finally, there is the little matter that Washington won’t be willing to escalate when it becomes clear Russia is winning. I have written a commentary for Forbes here.