Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey delivered a policy speech, “U.S. Military Power in a Complex World,” as part of the Pacific Forum at the Pacific Club here July 1, 2014.
The forum is a part of the Center for Strategic and International Studies, which is based in Washington, District of Columbia, and gives government officials, business leaders and scholars the opportunity to talk about Pacific policy.
Dempsey explained the U.S. military’s foremost role and responsibility as part of the forum.
“First and always, our military is our nation’s insurance policy,” Dempsey said. “Our most fundamental task is to protect the homeland and our citizens. We keep the nation immune from coercion. We must stand ready to take direct combat action when asked at any time, in any place, against any adversary. That’s what the American people expect.”
There is a stronger need for assurance to partner nations however, than insurance challenges today, Dempsey said.
“There’s an increasing appetite for our leadership to help maintain the international order,” Dempsey said. “Frankly, our ability to provide this assurance is at risk due to a growing deficit between supply and demand. It’s necessary that we make wise decisions about where and how to apply military power.”
The Asia-Pacific region is one region where the U.S. military has and will continue to build multilateral partnerships.
“As the Asia Pacific continues it’s remarkable rise, it will only become more important for us to gather and discuss the security challenges that will in fact shape this regions future, but also will shape the world’s future,” Dempsey said.
In order to lead at a strategic inflection point and to continue to provide military capability, Dempsey says that the U.S. armed forces need to become more agile in how forces are deployed and must expand the understanding of and approach to building partner capacity beyond bilateral operations.
“When time and patience investment come together, and stay together, we do make a difference,” Dempsey said. “Partnering is a hallmark of the U.S. military and it will be even more important tomorrow, than it is today.”