Mark Esper: US Military Needs to Adapt, Implement National Defense Strategy to Fight New Threats

Jeff Brody
Mark Esper

Defense Secretary and 2019 Wash100 Award winner Mark Esper said the U.S. military should “adapt” to counter cyber attacks and threats in space amid the resurgence of “great power competition,” the Air Force reported Wednesday. He cited the role of the National Defense Strategy in ensuring national security and fighting threats from near-peer competitors.

“If we are to remain the world’s preeminent military power, then we must change course away from the past and face the challenges of the future head on. … Everything we do must be aimed towards achieving the goals and objectives of (the NDS),” he said Wednesday at the Air Force Association’s Air, Space and Cyber conference.

Esper also discussed the need for the establishment of the Space Force as a separate service branch and the importance of developing the military’s competitive edge in multidomain operations, which he said will demand technical advancements and cultural change.

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