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Op-ed: How to Counter Biden’s National Security Incompetence in 2022

February 16, 2022

By Fred Fleitz

The inept national security policies of Joe Biden during his first year in office caused a profound deterioration in American and global security that is certain to worsen in 2022 unless he takes aggressive steps to change course. 

From his disastrous withdrawal of U.S troops from Afghanistan, lack of coherent policies to deal with Russia and China, a stubborn determination to appease Iran to revive the deeply flawed 2015 nuclear deal, and an obsession with climate change as a national security issue, Biden in just one year severely undermined America’s global reputation as a strong and principled nation. 

Making this worse is a global perception that Joe Biden is not mentally competent to be the U.S. commander in chief. 

America’s enemies have been watching this unprecedented deterioration of American global leadership and are preparing to cash in. This could include in 2022 China attacking Taiwan, Russia invading Ukraine, and increased provocations by Iran and North Korea, including possible nuclear tests by both nations. There is also the threat to the United States directly by criminal and national security threats resulting from Biden’s failure to secure our southern border. 

Biden’s advisers and members of Congress must recognize that threats to American security could significantly worsen in 2022 and demand changes to the Biden Administration’s national security policies and staffing. These changes should include:

First, fire Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas, and National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan. These officials have been weak advisers to an incompetent president and should be replaced with more experienced Democratic experts with gravitas and principle. 

Second, Biden needs to recognize that deferring to the foreign policy elite by re-entering the Paris Climate Accord, reviving the Iran nuclear deal, and becoming a member of the “European club” is not in America’s national security or economic interests. Instead, he should return to President Trump’s successful “America First” approach to national security that made America’s national interests and the interests of the American people the priority in international agreements and security decision making. We need a commander in chief who wants to be respected rather than be liked. 

Third, it is urgent that Biden take two important steps to secure the homeland from threats abroad. Biden should reinstitute the effective and enhanced screening and vetting requirements all countries were subjected to under the Trump Administration. Raising the global bar on travel security protects Americans. He also needs to secure our southern border by resuming construction of border wall systems, effectively implement the “Remain in Mexico” program, and allow immigration officers to effectively remove individuals from American communities.

Fourth, the Biden Administration should implement a robust Asia-Pacific national security policy that recognizes the existential threat that China poses to American and global security as it seeks global hegemony. This should start by treating China as an adversary and calling on U.S. corporations, the news media, sport teams, and entertainment figures to speak out against China’s appalling human rights record, especially its persecution of the Uighurs which the Trump and Biden Administrations have described as genocide. Aggressive steps must be taken to stop Chinese theft of U.S. technology, trade secrets, and intelligence. America also must do more to work with its allies in the region, especially Japan, South Korea and Taiwan, to help them stand up to China. 

Fifth, on Russia, Biden must stop making the mistake of the Obama/Biden Administration concerning Ukraine by drawing red lines and then doing nothing when Russian President Putin ignores them. While Russia should be sanctioned if it invades or attacks Ukraine, Biden should cease his public criticism of Putin and pursue a new policy of engaging him and finding ways to co-exist with Russia to discourage the budding Russia-China alliance, which could prove to be a far more serious threat than Russia alone to American and European security. 

Sixth, Biden needs to return to a principled Middle East policy which supports our friends and does not appease our enemies. This means ending his farcical effort to salvage the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran and impose tough sanctions on Iran for its massive violations of this agreement. The administration also must stop undermining the U.S. relationship with Israel, support the historic Abraham Accords, and improve relations with and stop criticizing other key allies in the region, especially Egypt and Saudi Arabia. 

Seventh, Biden’s undermining America’s energy security has not just hurt the U.S. economy, it has greatly benefited foreign oil and gas producers, especially Russian producers (U.S. oil imports from Russia hit a 10-year high last year.) Biden should immediately re-approve the Keystone XL oil pipeline, renew oil and gas leases on federal land, and halt the administration’s war on gasoline-powered cars. 

There are many other steps Joe Biden should take to repair the enormous damage he has done to our national security in his first year in office.

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You can read the oped on American Greatness