1. a fundamental shift in military power for the region
2. a major acceleration in the proliferation of A2/AD systems
3. the return to an age of geopolitical competition
Western sanctions — implemented in response to Russian intervention in Ukraine:
- have imposed significant costs on the Russian economy and
- ratcheted up the tension between Russia and the West.
- It now appears that tension has spilled over into the Iranian situation.
- With the upcoming sale of the S-300 to Iran,
- Russia has found a way to increase our costs dramatically, should we deem it necessary to intervene there.
- One final observation: The training required to prepare against an S-300 threat is exactly the type,
- that has been so damaged by the sequester cuts of 2013 and the budget caps of 2014/2015
- Recently, Secretary of the Air Force Deborah James stated that:
- 50% of Air Force combat units are not trained to the level necessary for the “high-end fight”
- In light of proliferation developments such as this Russian deal with Iran, that is not a reassuring statistic.