First Deputy Secretary of Defense of the United States Kathleen Hicks noted that “the national defense strategy of the country fully takes into account the threat from the Russian Federation in Europe and beyond.”

In accordance with the new version of the national defense strategy, the American authorities will continue to consider China, not Russia, as the main strategic rival, despite the situation around Ukraine. This was confirmed by the First Deputy Secretary of Defense of the United States Kathleen Hicks, speaking on Friday at a conference organized by the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation.

“Russia poses an acute threat to the international system,” she argued. “<…”Our national defense strategy fully takes into account the threat from the Russian Federation in Europe and beyond, but even now, when we are faced with Russian aggression and malicious activity, the strategy clearly states that the PRC is the most serious strategic rival and the main challenge for our armed Forces,” the Deputy minister said.

At the end of March, the Pentagon released declassified excerpts from the new edition of the U.S. National Defense Strategy. It follows from them that the Washington administration considers China at this stage as the main strategic competitor and challenge for the United States.