Sunset on America

Newt Gingrich recently wrote an interesting opinion piece that blasted U.S. foreign policy and our capabilities to meet 21st century security threats.  His point was that the U.S. national defense posture as a global superpower is being challenged by both China and Russia, and the U.S. response is weak and does not bode well for our future.

As the global super-power that historically strived to expand freedom, provide greater economic prosperity, and protect equal opportunities for all, this is not the time for the U.S. to retreat from global leadership.  Our adversaries are watching and testing us to determine whether we have become a paper tiger.

Make no mistake about it, China is accelerating ambitions to usurp the United States as the global leader. China is the greatest security threat since the collapse of the Soviet Union. The difference now is that China has a much larger population, has accumulated significantly more wealth, and has not been seriously challenged in their global expansion behavior.

“Ironically, China will only gain regional power when the U.S. loses the will to lead, which appears to be the path of the Biden Administration.”

China successfully fired a hypersonic missile in October, which circled the globe with a glide vehicle that deployed a projectile towards it’s intended target. The United States was caught flat-footed and stunned by their advancement in hypersonics.

To establish regional domination, China has built two artificial islands in the highly contested Spratly Island region of the South China Sea, designed specifically for military purposes to intimidate its neighbors. By asserting territorial control over this area rich in both oil and gas reserves, China is testing U.S. mettle.  

What has been the U.S. response? Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin placated the Chinese at his confirmation by asserting that China is “already a regional hegemon” and seeks to become “a dominant world power.”  Ironically, China will only gain regional power when the U.S. loses the will to lead, which appears to be the path of the Biden Administration.

Through the Belt and Road Initiative, China is expanding military capabilities worldwide. China has already built a military port in Djibouti, has gained control of the strategic Sri Lankan port of Hambantota, and is negotiating with Equatorial Guinea for control of the port in Bata that will provide their first foot-hold for a military presence along the Atlantic Ocean.

China has more ice breakers than the U.S. and is currently building a nuclear-powered ice breaker. With this capacity the Chinese merchant and military fleets will have unfettered year-round access to the Arctic.

“Recent action sends a clear message to Japan that the U.S. may not be able to defend their national interests.”

Over the past year, China has dramatically increased military aggression against Taiwan. Most chilling is how absolutely unprepared the United States is to counter this Chinese expansion. In a recent U.S. war-game, which simulated a conflict between China over Taiwan, the U.S. was outmaneuvered.  Recently retired General John Hyten, former Vice Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, stated that the fictional China “ran rings around us. They knew exactly what we were going to do before we did it, and they took advantage of it.” In other words, the U.S. has failed to focus on an adversary determined to replace the it as a global leader.

And to think that the Walker Administration almost signed away Alaska’s future with his Chinese agreement to build an Alaska Natural Gas Pipeline. “You have the buyer, the customer with Sinopec, you have the bank with Bank of China and you have the investor with the China Investment Corporation, so, to have all those three on the same document is impressive,” said former Governor Bill Walker. All Chinese state-owned businesses agreeing to finance our gas line.  What could go wrong?  But I digress.

Last year we intercepted over 60 Russian aircraft inside the U.S. Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ), most just off the coast of Alaska.  The latest intercept was on October 19th of this year. Coincidently it immediately followed the Joint Sea 2021 Russian-Chinese naval drills in the Sea of Japan. As part of the exercise Russian and Chinese vessels sailed through the Tsugaru Strait between Honshu and Hokkaido, down Japan’s Pacific coast through the Osumi Strait between the southern tip of Kyushu and the island of Tanegashima where Japan’s space launch facilities are situated and into the contested South China Sea. This action was a clear message to Japan that the U.S. may not be able to defend their national interests.

“This military build-up is happening just across the Bering Straits from Alaska.  We should be very concerned.”

Russia has stepped up intercepts of U.S. military aircraft flying over the Black Sea.  Russia is amassing troops along the Ukraine border for a potential invasion of Eastern Ukraine, which would be a direct challenge to U.S. credibility abroad after President Biden assured Ukrainian President Zelenskyy of American support.    

Russia is significantly increasing its Pacific activities, to include greater naval activity in the Arctic.  Russian has re-opened the military fighter base in Anadyr and built six new bases in the region, as well as upgrading Mys Shmidta. This build-up is happening just across the Bering Straits from Alaska.  We should be very concerned.

So what is our current military posture and priorities?  Our military leadership demonstrated extreme incompetence in the disgraceful withdrawal from Afghanistan.  We botched an Afghanistan drone strike and killed innocent civilians.  We abandoned Americans in Afghanistan after the Taliban took control.  We left behind over 600,000 weapons, 2,000 armored vehicles, and over 40 aircraft and drones, valued at nearly $10 Billion dollars.

It appears the U.S. military is once again being hollowed out by D.C. politicos. We are no longer willing to exert leadership on the world stage.  Rather, we are elevating “climate change” as a national security priority for the Department of Defense. We are forcing warriors out of the military for not getting the COVID vaccine. We are “standing down” to talk about extremism and purging the force of “white supremacists” while not addressing the threat of extreme violence by Antifa and Black Lives Matter. President Biden’s nominee for the Vice Chair of the Joint Chief of Staff , Admiral Christopher Grady, tells Congress that “gender advisors” for combat troops are critical to the success of the United States. You just can’t make up this stuff.

It’s all about being WOKE, not about national security or world peace. As the United States withdraws from a global role and fails to challenge the champions of totalitarianism in their efforts to expand socialism and communism around the world, we will be living in a more dangerous place. This script has been played before and it has never ended peacefully.

It’s not too late to change the course of history. America is a great country. Our military warriors are the best. We have the resources to remain a global leader, we just need the vision and fortitude to make it happen. It is my Christmas prayer that our national leadership recognizes the gross errors they are making in their quest to appease evil, and then do as President Teddy Roosevelt did, “Speak softly and carry a big stick.”

The views expressed here are those of the author.

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Is the sun setting on American Global Exceptionalism?

Craig Campbell
Craig E. Campbell served on the Anchorage Assembly between 1986 and 1995 and later as Alaska’s Tenth Lieutenant Governor. He was the previous Chief Executive Officer and President for Alaska Aerospace Corporation. He retired from the Alaska National Guard as Lieutenant General (AKNG) and holds the concurrent retired Federal rank of Major General (USAF).


  • Ed Martin Jr says:

    MG Campbell , I agree other then your last Line! It’s time to ” weed out the Communists ” as exist as our Domestic Enemy’s !

    • John J Otness says:

      They are being forced vaxxed to Trojan horse us.

      • Sharon Alice Turner says:

        WE the sheeple’ have allowed every iota of what is here, now! Kick God out of the schools and public square, Marriage out, out of wedlock fatherless and sometimes motherless children left to the control of the “Marxist” left. In trade for what? 2 more SUV’s, smart phones, manicures? Pray to the idols of NFL, NBA? who spit on us? Let kids be raised by violent and vapid games? Pay the teachers and their unions to give untold millions to more and bigger degradation of our schools–that we pay every cent for so kids can’t read or think? Read Stalin’s own words on this. WE are our own enemy. Apathy is us!

  • Neil DeWitt says:

    Thanks to the democratic president and his socialist agenda the USA will be a third world country in 3 more years.

    • Steven Chappell says:

      Lets Hope Not but in my 57 years on Gods Given Planet I have never seen us closer to the destruction of the Greatest Country to ever be developed.

    • . says:

      Man I wish he was a socialist. The democrats are actually rather far right by global standards, it’s depressing.

  • Proud Alaskan says:

    President Teddy Roosevelt did, “Speak softly and carry a big stick”
    Love it

  • Jen says:

    Destruction is inevitable for any country that does not repent. You know even china and russia will face their doomsdays too if they don’t repent for their sins, greed, lusts, and murders. Speaking locally how many alaskans are teaching and sharing christ even inviting people around you to read the bible with you? Change doesn’t begin only by changing leaders its by when peoples hearts and wills are changed. For the country peoples who repented at least for those generations they see god’s mercy not to see destruction in their lifetime.

    • Jen says:

      There is salvation for a truly repented person who recognized need for jesus christ that even all your money can’t save you even if while your nation collaspes all the escape plans the richer person planned can’t save them. I heard some saying if this america falls they are confident in plans for other places where they can escape and its all folly

  • Jeff says:

    Worry about the our dead culture first. I for one don’t want our nation running the rest of the world when it’s culture condones castrating boys because they might play with dolls. Fix ourselves first.

  • John C. James says:

    Agree with your observations/positions Sir. You have laid out the argument beutifully for strengthening the Alaska State Defense Force (ASDF). Thoroughly agree that the current federal DOD/Army/Air T10 and T32 posture is less than optimal and will take years for the DOD to correctly align/resource components commensurate with previously published Arctic Strategies. What we can immedietly affect is increased capability and capacity, in order to protct Alaskans, by resourcing, training, and equipping our constitutionally eastablished ASDF. Thank you for your time and efforts Sir. DEFEND ALASKA!