Good morning. Here’s your Early Warning for Wednesday, 21 February 2018.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is expected to publish the order to end net neutrality on Thursday. That’s going to open up the decision to legal action from states and other organizations in efforts to block the decision. In addition, Congress will have a 60-day period to consider overturning the decision as well. [source]
The U.S. and South Korea are expected to resume military exercises after the Olympics and Paralympics, which will probably heat up the Korean Peninsula again. North Korea views these exercises as preparation for war. The Olympics end on 25 February, and the Paralympics end on 18 March. [source]
The U.S. Navy and Marine Corps are increasing the intensity of their training to fight in high end conflicts. At a defense conference earlier this month, one Marine general said, “All of our training scenarios are against a peer or near-peer competitor. They’re all based on [operational] plans. If it’s not based on an [operational] plan, then don’t do it.” Including realistic training scenarios against adversaries with known capabilities is expected to increase Corps readiness to succeed in high intensity fighting. “We’re trying to make sure the Marines are instilled with the confidence to be able to go against a peer competitor. Some of it is as simple as air threats: we haven’t had a bomb dropped on us in almost 70 years, you have to begin to prepare yourselves for an aviation threat which we haven’t faced since the ‘50s. We’re doing that.” One additional aspect of expected conflict, whether against Russia or China, is that commanders expect the communications environment to be highly contested. “[I]f we go to a completely comm-degraded environment, I win all day long because it’s about training – because if nobody’s talking, I win because I will guarantee you the Marines that we have are far better trained than the soldiers or Marines we’d go up against. If they can’t talk and I can’t talk, I win all day long.” [source]