Under certain circumstances, the US may lose a possible conflict with Russia in Europe or with China over Taiwan, according to a report by the RAND think tank, quoted by CNBC on Saturday.
The report, compiled by the reputed US-based nonprofit global policy think tank, is headlined entitled "U.S. Military Capabilities and Forces for a Dangerous World." According to the 190-page document, the capabilities of two countries - Russia and China - have advanced so much that under certain conditions they could have a military edge over the US.
The document’s authors claim that at present, US armed forces are "insufficiently trained and ready," especially in terms of the active service components.
"In short, providing the military power called for by the United States' ambitious national security strategy, which has never been easy, has recently become considerably more challenging," the report reads. "The coincidence of this new reality with a period of constrained defense budgets has led to a situation in which it is now far from clear that our military forces are adequate for the tasks being placed before them."
"Put more starkly, assessments in this report will show that US forces could, under plausible assumptions, lose the next war they are called upon to fight, despite the United States outspending China military forces by a ratio of 2.7:1 and Russia by 6:1," the document continues. "The nation needs to do better than this."
According to analysts, NATO may face certain difficulties if Russia decides to move into Baltic states.
"In short, we concluded that, as currently postured, NATO cannot defend the Baltic states against a determined, short-warning Russian attack," the document says.
In case of China, the US will have tough times defending Taiwan if Beijing opts to retake the breakaway island republic. Besides, China studied previous US military campaigns to develop own strategies on this basis.
Earlier this year, the Russian Defense Ministry dismissed the "unprecedented hysteria in European media" about Russia’s Zapad-2017 military exercise, especially in the Baltic states and Poland.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said NATO’s allegations about the Zapad-2017 Russian-Belarusian joint military drills being aggressive have turned out to be false, while the alliance still hasn’t pulled its troops out of the Baltic States. "They [NATO] deployed troops to the Eastern Europe citing the so-called Russian threat, they even said that the Zapad-2017 Russian-Belarusian exercises had been aimed at preparing an aggression against the Baltic States, and that Russia wanted to conquer Belarus as well," the Russian top diplomat said. "But none of those allegations proved to be true, they all turned out false. Nevertheless, the troops they sent to the Baltic States in order to counter the threat that, they believed, the Zapad-2017 drills posed, still remain there.".