Assessing America’s national security strategy

On October 12, the White House released a long-awaited National Security Strategy or NSS 2022, which is a document that shows the approach of the US administration to the US response to the global crisis, how it plans to deal with its allies in various region of the world and its foreign policy framework regarding both Russia and China and how it views its role in a changing world, among others.

The 48-page document makes for interesting reading although critics say such a paper is usually published at the start of a presidency and no more than two years later. In addition, the document comes weeks before US voters go to the crucial midterm elections that could make Joe Biden a lame duck president for the rest of his first term.

Furthermore, the document was released as the United States and Europe find themselves embroiled in the most serious crisis since the fall of the Soviet Union.

Critics also say that the NSS was written after the fact; This means that the authors had the luxury of looking at how the world has evolved since Joe Biden took office and could make corrections that align with current politics.

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Why the White House took so long to deliver is an open question. But now that the NSS has been made public, one can examine it and hope to understand what this Democratic administration is trying to achieve in terms of its foreign policy.

One of the most intriguing readings is the part about Russia. The NSS says that in the last decade Moscow wants to change the international order. But if the analysts and strategists knew what was happening, why could they not predict Russia’s operation in Ukraine?

What the NSS misses big time is how the war in Ukraine has changed the discourse, the dynamics and the foundations of foreign policy around the world. NSS talks about the US-European alliance, which is now under unprecedented strain as a result of an acute energy crisis, rampant inflation and the financing of a seemingly never-ending war.

Face new challenges

The Transatlantic Alliance is facing new challenges as European voters and politicians cast doubt on this precious partnership. The reality is that America has the option of isolating itself from the rest of the world, focusing more on its southern hemisphere and the challenges it poses to the United States such as illegal immigration and drugs.

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He can afford to wash his hands of Europe as some Trump surrogates suggest; he said that if they take the House of Representatives come November they will not sign blank checks in Ukraine.

The NSS also talks about preserving the existing international order, aka standing America as the world’s only superpower. He also talks about defending the UN Charter. On both counts, the US record is dismal. Let’s not talk about the invasion of Iraq or the humiliating withdrawal from Afghanistan. Under America’s watch the world several violations of the UN Charter.

The NSS has positive parts in terms of strengthening international cooperation on climate change, energy security, arms control and non-proliferation, food insecurity and pandemics, but if the recent US reaction to an OPEC+ technical decision to cut oil production is any indication . , then one can see how the impulsive US reaction can deviate from the commitments written foreign policy.

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The part about the Middle East interests us. He talks about eschewing grandiose designs in favor of more practical steps that can advance US interests and help regional partners lay the foundation for greater stability, prosperity, and opportunity for the people of the Middle East and for the American people.

Read more about establishing a new framework for US policy in the region based on America’s unparalleled comparative advantage in building partnerships, coalitions, and alliances to strengthen deterrence, while using diplomacy to reduce tensions, reduce the risk of new conflict, and establish. a long-term foundation for stability.

I am well aware that some of America’s allies may struggle to understand how its actions can be reconciled with its goals. The NSS suggests a framework of five principles – all linked to common defense and regional cooperation. Countries in the region are already working on these lines without needing outside help.

Osama Al Sharif is a journalist and political commentator based in Amman.

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