The United States has again entered a period characterized by great power competition after a quarter century as the world’s sole superpower. By expanding exports in a globalizing economy and exploiting the precision-strike weapons revolution, China and Russia have improved their military capabilities and economic positions over the last 20 years.
They now seek to revise the international order in their favor, in part by undermining U.S. influence in their regions and beyond. Their multi-dimensional efforts toward raising their own status while degrading that of the United States include China’s infrastructure development and financial investment in strategically important countries, Russia’s securing control of energy supplies to its neighbors, and both states’ assistance to friendly regimes such as that of Bashar al Assad in Syria.
However, the governments of China and Russia have arguably made the most striking gains and displayed the greatest innovation in the development of their military capabilities. Both have deployed sophisticated long-range sensor and weapon networks along their borders and in occupied lands.
Ostensibly, this posture is intended to protect Chinese or Russian territory, but it enables their militaries to degrade the ability of the United States and other powers to intervene in aggressive operations in their near abroad.
Click here for the full report (84 PDF pages) on the CSBA website.