Defense Secretary Dr. Mark T. Esper Shares Comments at Air Force Association’s Virtual Air, Space & Cyber Conference
“New technologies are fundamentally changing the character of war and the two Air Force services are leading that charge,” Defense Secretary Dr. Mark T. Esper said at the Air Force Association’s Virtual Air, Space & Cyber Conference today.
In this time of COVID-19, Esper addressed the group virtually.
The secretary stated that America’s air, space, and cyber warriors “will be at the forefront of tomorrow’s high-end fight.”
“That means confronting near-peer competitors China and Russia. That means shifting the focus from defeating violent extremist groups to deterring great power competitors. It means fighting a high-intensity battle that combines all domains of warfare,” he said.
“In this era of great power competition, we cannot take for granted the United States’ long-held advantages,” Esper said.
The last time an enemy force dropped a bomb on American troops was in the Korean War. “China and Russia seek to erode our long-standing dominance in air power through long-range fires, anti-access/area-denial systems, and other asymmetric capabilities designed to counter our strengths,” he said. “Meanwhile, in space, Moscow and Beijing have turned a once peaceful arena into a warfighting domain.”