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"Today, America's military reclaims an era of strategic objective, alert to the realities of a changing world", said Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, according to the prepared remarks of his speech on Friday morning.

"This strategy is fit for our time, providing the American people the military required to protect our way of life, stand with our allies and live up to our responsibility to pass intact to the next generation those freedoms we enjoy today", Mattis said.

It marks a shift from an approach that President Barack Obama's administration used, which listed Russia, China, Iran, North Korea and terrorism on more equal footing as threats...

Mattis added, "To those who would threaten America's experiment in democracy, they must know: If you challenge us it will be your longest and your worst day".

He went on to speak about extremist groups, spreading violence around the world.

While the United States was "still strong", the defence secretary said, its competitive edge had "eroded in every domain of warfare - air, land, sea, space and cyberspace - and is continually eroding".

The strategy also emphasized the importance of USA allies and partners, while at the same time asking them to contribute more to their mutual security.

Mattis, speaking during a question and answer period following a speech, said he would leave this weekend for a trip to Indonesia and Vietnam.

But as tensions in the Korean Peninsula have continued to rise over the past year, American military commanders and senior defense officials have fretted over whether 16 years of counterinsurgency fighting has left the military unprepared for a great powers land war.

Referring to the current wrangle in the Senate over a bill to fund federal agencies temporarily, he said a shutdown would have an impact on military operations.

The Department of Defense employs approximately 750,000 civilian personnel.

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"No enemy in the field has done more to harm the readiness of the USA military than" the "budgetary confusion" imposed by the caps and by stopgap spending measures passed by Congress, Mattis said.

New emphasis will be put on being able to work coherently with the military forces of our allies, he said. "It'll impact obviously our medical facilities", Mattis said.

The new National Defense Strategy envisions America's military focusing on combating authoritarian ideals rather than the protracted global war on terror.

The strategy also specifically mentions "Article 5" of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), saying that commitment to it is "vital" to US security.

While current and new allies around the world take over some of the burden of maintaining the US-backed world order, the Pentagon itself will undergo massive reforms in how it buys weapons and equipment, manages its affairs and accounts for its finances. Deputy Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan predicted that would be the case last month, saying the Pentagon focused on other priorities.

This strategy means nothing if the resources are not in place, Mattis said.

McCain warned, however, that Congress must "immediately reach a bipartisan budget agreement to provide the funding necessary to implement this strategy".

"We need Congress back in the driver's seat for budget decisions instead of in the spectator seat for budget control acts", Mattis said. "Loyalty must be a two-way street".

The US Military will also try to find other partners in regions like the Indo-Pacific to work with, according to the NDS.

'What it is recognising is that China and Russian Federation, in particular, have been assiduously working over a number of years to develop the military capabilities to challenge our military advantages, ' Elbridge Colby, the deputy assistant secretary of defence for strategy and force development, told reporters 18 January.


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