TheBlaze’s national security editor Buck Sexton once again filled in for Glenn on radio this morning, and he opened the program with a ‘deep dive’ into national security – drawing on his background as a member of the CIA and NYPD Intelligence Division.
“I want to focus in on something that I call the ‘Buck Brief’ which is where I go deep into national security,” Buck explained. “I am a radio host on TheBlaze Radio Network. I do a show Saturday from 12:00 to 3:00, and the ‘Buck Brief’ has become somewhat of a staple where we go into geopolitics into the strategy of our intelligence community, of our military, and that’s what I want to start with now.”
With the Christmas season upon us, Buck decided to take a look at the non-Christmas celebrating world and explain the major shift in geopolitical relations and structure that has been underway for some five years now. Are witnessing the early stages of the disintegration of America as a global hegemon? Buck explains.
I want to take you away from your presents for a minute, or at least take your attention away from them – from the tree that you are probably dressing up with all sorts of ornaments and from your yuletide cheer. I want to focus on what could accurately be called the world that doesn’t celebrate Christmas, the non-Christmas world.
You see, news as you know is a construct. News is a construct of journalists, news is a construct of people who work in that business and so while all of us are on or preparing to be on holiday and getting ready to spend time with family, the rest of the world continues on in large part as is. As part of breaking down my sense of geopolitics right now, I want to use a term that has fallen out of use somewhat. If we’re going to speak about the non-Christmas-celebrating world or perhaps the world in which Christmas, if celebrated, is celebrated seldom and by very few, that term is Christendom. It used to correspond with what we now know as or consider to be the West. It is the torch of Western civilization, of course, that America now holds, America as a liberal democracy, and the global hegemon, economically, military, militarily and politically.
But what we are witnessing during this Christmas season is a shift, a shift in geopolitics, a shift in national security strategy that has occurred over the course of not just the past year, really the course of the past five years due to the ideology and proclivity of this Administration. You are witnessing the early stages of the disintegration of America as a global hegemon, and countries that fall out of the designation that we could call the West, formerly Christendom, before that the Roman Empire, before that Greece.
There are challenges now. You could break it down roughly into three. You could break it down into political Islam, Islamism, which encompasses Sunni and Shia varieties, Jihadis and theocrats, nation states dedicated to the idea of opposing and eventually overcoming the West, like Iran, and groups within nations that seem bent upon either overthrowing those in charge of them now, the near-enemy, or striking out before they can even accomplish that at the far-enemy, which would be us and perhaps Israel.
There’s also Russia which, while not necessarily right now openly hostile in all acts and intents, has a narrative of politics and a narrative of geopolitics that is different than ours and in many ways contrary to ours. It’s a friend to nonaligned countries, it’s a friend to states that view themselves as oppositional to the United States. Over the past year we’ve seen a tremendous amount of Russian activity that we could easily decide and easily view as being intended to hamper and hobble the U.S., in some cases so openly that it’s become brazen, it’s become almost a point of satire for this when looking at this administration. It’s unbelievable.
And then, of course, you have China whose main power and main opposition seems to be on the economic front. It’s focused regionally more so than it is a global narrative. North Korea and other rogue states, of course, can find a friend in China because the Chinese government acts without a sense of any overarching morality. It’s really just trying to achieve its own somewhat parochial interests now, and those interests will, of course, expand as it secures them over time.
This, if you will, is a time in which America finds itself not out of power, not pushed from the heights of being the hegemon but all of the indicators are showing it moving in that direction. And when you add to that, an administration that so clearly not only lacks a vision for the projection of American power and ideals abroad but actually shirks from that, does not believe in what had been considered the American experiment’s relationship with the rest of the world up until now, wants to change it. And by changing it perhaps they only have to do what they’ve been doing recently, which is either bumbling through it or, just as effective in many ways, doing nothing, refusing to bolster our allies, refusing to scare off our enemies, acting as though everything is a surprise that should have been known weeks or months in advance, acting as though they’ve never been there before. There is an amateurism on display by those in charge of the greatest most powerful nation on the history of the planet.
We have to understand that no matter how powerful the machine, if those at the levers have no understanding of how to utilize it, and not only that but how to keep it as it is, we will see a degradation of U.S. power abroad, and that is what we are seeing right now. We are seeing a removal of strategic interests and strategic assets in places where one couldn’t have dreamed before this administration had come to power it would ever occur. We’ve seen Russia set up missiles in opposition to close allies. We’ve seen the Chinese become increasingly bellicose over a bunch of small islands in the East China Sea, and the forces of global jihad – and this perhaps more pronounced than any of the others – see a moment, see an opening.
At one point it would have been enough for them to strike out at the West, to lash out at us for our perceived wrongdoings. Now there is a shift. There is the possibility in Syria, for example, of a jihadist state undreamed of since the Taliban-ran Afghanistan. There was the possibility for an Iranian nuclear power pushing its Shia Islamic ideals around the region, creating a situation in which we could see a Saudi versus Iranian showdown involving nuclear missiles. This is a dangerous world we live in and that is something you will always hear, but in this case it’s more than a platitude because it’s becoming increasingly dangerous. And as we’ve seen the people in charge right now are absolutely incapable of showing anything that would approach strategic vision and I would offer to you even the most basic competence in international affairs.