Military Dollars, and Sense

The bipartisan agreement to increase the Pentagon’s budget by $81 billion lets the U.S defense establishment fatten current programs and continue to do business as usual while avoiding questions about how to win wars. Such disconnection between ends and means puts bureaucratic interests over strategic success in war. Increasing the budget should be

By | 2018-02-17T08:47:04+00:00 February 16th, 2018|

Another Mideast War?

In romantic tones echoing the 2003 Iraq campaign, protests in Iran have inspired maudlin swooning by interventionists. “It’s the West’s job in these coming weeks to support our real allies, the Iranian people demanding freedom," said Bill Kristol the other day. Former U.N. ambassador John Bolton proclaimed “our goal should be regime change

By | 2018-01-08T07:19:28+00:00 January 7th, 2018|

Trump’s Doctrine: ‘Principled Realism’ Comes to the Fore

Congress requires every administration to submit an outline of its national security strategy. This is usually a behind-the-scenes exercise, carried out by the national security team. But with his speech at the Reagan Building today, Donald Trump put his administration’s ideas about foreign policy and national security under klieg lights at center stage.

By | 2017-12-18T13:24:04+00:00 December 18th, 2017|

A Jacksonian Manifesto

Administrations by law must publish strategic manifestoes. Indeed, the Goldwater–Nichols Department of Defense Reorganization Act of October 4, 1986 required every subsequent government to issue periodic and formal national strategic strategy blueprints. Most of these documents dating from the Reagan Administration are blah-blah boilerplate announcements of the obvious. They offer platitudinous promises of

By | 2017-12-19T09:39:08+00:00 December 18th, 2017|

An America First National Security Strategy

The Trump Administration continues to run circles around its detractors. In an historically unusual move, President Donald Trump will be unveiling his administration’s first National Security Strategy (NSS) memo soon. Required by the Goldwater-Nichols Act, the National Security Strategy memo is a document that is released by the executive branch of the United

By | 2017-12-07T13:56:01+00:00 December 7th, 2017|

What Will It Take to Get Serious About Missile Defense?

North Korea’s possession of mobile-launched missiles that can deliver nukes anywhere in the United States shows that, nowadays, anybody can make lots of pinpoint-accurate missiles of any range. Since America’s ICBMs, submarines, and bombers are fewer, concentrated in fewer places than ever, even North Korea can carry out the kind of disarming attack

By | 2017-12-02T11:49:22+00:00 December 1st, 2017|