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U.S. Gen. Mark Milley warns West Point grads of 'significant international conflict' with Russia and China

"You’ll be fighting with robotic tanks, and ships, and airplanes."

U.S. Gen. Mark Milley warns West Point grads of 'significant international conflict' with Russia and China
AP Photo/Alex Brandon
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General Mark Milley, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in the United States warned graduating cadets from West Point to prepare for a “significant international conflict” between the United States and its Russian and Chinese adversaries. 

In a speech in which he addressed more than 1,000 U.S. Army officer graduates, Milley informed his audience that “you’ll be fighting with robotic tanks, and ships, and airplanes.” 

“We’ve witnessed a revolution in lethality and precision munitions,” he added. “What was once the exclusive province of the United States military is now available to most nation states with the money and will to acquire them.” 

Milley, who serves as the principal military adviser to the White House, informed graduates to prepare for war and one that was certain to change the face of warfare, Fox News reported. 

“The world you are being commissioned into has the potential for a significant international conflict between great powers,” Milley said. “And that potential is increasing, not decreasing.” 

Milley’s remarks come as America continues to escalate tensions with Russia by deploying billions of dollars worth of heavy artillery and anti-tank munitions to Eastern Europe, where conflict between Russia and Ukraine has been ongoing for nearly three months. 

“Whatever overmatch we, the United States, enjoyed militarily for the last 70 years is closing quickly, and the United States will be, in fact... challenged in every domain of warfare – space, cyber, maritime, air, and of course land,” he stated, noting that the United States can no longer afford to rest on its laurels as China and Russia continue to make significant advances in military technology and strategy. 

“Right now, at this very moment, a fundamental change is happening in the very character of war,” said Milley, who drew comparisons between technology used in Ukraine and conflicts that will be fought in the near future. 

“We are facing right now two global powers, China and Russia, each with significant military capabilities, and both who fully intend to change the current rules based order,” he warned. 

Milley used the opportunity to signal his opposition to Russia’s military efforts against its neighbour, reminding the Army officer graduates of the “slaughter that occurred in Mariupol,” referring to the decisive liquidation of Azov Battalion forces in the region. 

“The best way to honour their sacrifice is to support their fight for freedom and to stand against tyranny,” he said. 

Following his comments on Russia, Milley then turned his sights toward China, pointing at their rapid advance in military technology. The general said that America’s military must be prepared to evolve with the times and change the way soldiers train, think and fight, as rival nations stand to bridge the gap. 

“It will be your generation that will carry the burden and shoulder the responsibility to maintain the peace, to contain and to prevent the outbreak of great power war,” he said.

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