These challenges are posed both in terms of potential high-intensity operations and the expanded gray zone area in which various tools are being and will be used to test the liberal democracies and for illiberal powers to seek to expand their influence and their interests.
What is the Nature of the Military Transition to Deal with Peer Competitors in a period of Significant Strategic Change?
In effect, the Williams Foundation just held a seminar which addressed this question.
The Williams Foundation has focused for the past few years on the modernization of the Royal Australian Air Force and its impact, with a key theme being the development of a fifth-generation approach to the transformation of the force.
From the outset, the overall approach has been to highlight the challenge and the opportunity to shape a more integrated force.
Seminars have been held highlighting how Australia and the allies have been working to shape a more integrated force, in terms of air-sea integration, air-sea integration and how to design an integrated force more effectively from the ground up, notably as new capabilities are considered in the transformation process.
Now the Foundation is focusing on the new strategic context within which this force will operate and the kinds of further changes necessary for Australia and allied forces in facing the challenges posed by peer competitors.
These challenges are posed both in terms of potential high intensity operations and the expanded gray zone area in which various tools are being and will be used to test the liberal democracies and for illiberal powers to seek to expand their influence and their interests.
On March 22, 2018, the Williams Foundation began to process of examining these key questions. The Williams Foundation laid out the following narrative in preparing the seminar along with the following questions:
Most Air Force and senior military leaders in the western world begin their military careers either around or shortly after the Falkland Wars which were watched globally as an epic air, sea, and amphibious campaign; conventionally fought at the ends of the earth and at the end of an immense supply chain for the British Forces.
The decades that followed saw warfare in the Balkans and Middle East, and counter insurgency operations in Afghanistan; warfare very different from that postured for during the cold war and exercised in high end air combat exercises.