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Friday, 23 April 2021

Biden expected to announce Pentagon review of China strategy: Official

Biden's review will be just one of several that the Pentagon is already carrying out, on everything from troops in the Middle East to its policy towards NATO

Reuters , Wednesday 10 Feb 2021
US President Joe Biden (Reuters)
US President Joe Biden (Reuters)
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US President Joe Biden is expected to announce on Wednesday a Pentagon review of its strategy towards China, looking at key areas including intelligence, technology and the military footprint in the region, a US official said.

The review will be just one of several that the Pentagon is already carrying out, on everything from troops in the Middle East to its policy towards NATO.

It comes as both countries are at loggerheads over issues from technology and human rights to Chinese military activities in the disputed South China Sea, with each accusing the other of deliberately provocative behavior.

The official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said a new 15-person task force would be created at the Pentagon to review the strategy and present its recommendations within four months.

Under Biden's predecessor, the Pentagon made countering China it's top priority, something Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin has signaled will continue.

Biden's remarks on China are only expected to be a small part of a broader list of issues he will raise during his first visit to the Pentagon since his Jan. 20 inauguration as US president.

Biden has already lifted a ban on recruiting transgender servicemembers imposed by Donald Trump's administration and secured Senate confirmation of Austin as the Pentagon's first Black defense secretary.

Democratic lawmakers are hoping Biden will usher in reforms intended to do everything from curbing sexual assault to addressing extremism and white nationalism in the ranks.

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