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The new administration takes ofﬁce in a time of great complexity. President Trump faces a national security environment shaped by strong currents: globalization; the proliferation of new, poor, and weak states, as well as nonstate actors; a persistent landscape of violent extremist organizations; slow economic growth; the rise of China and a revanchist Russia; a collapsing Middle East; and domestic policies wracked by division and mistrust.
While in absolute terms the Nation and the world are safer than in the last century, today the United States ﬁnds itself almost on a permanent
war footing, engaged in military operations around the world.
This book, written by experts at the Defense Department’s National Defense University, offers valuable policy advice and grand strategy
recommendations to the senior leaders who will staff and lead the Trump administration in national security affairs. The President and his staff, Members of Congress, and the many leaders throughout government concerned with the Nation’s security interests should ﬁnd this book valuable. Their task is not an easy one, and this volume’s insights and reﬂections are offered with an ample dose of humility.
There are no silver bullets, no elegant solutions to the complex problems confronting America and its leaders. This volume provides context and understanding about the current national security environment to those in the new administration as they prepare to lead the Nation during challenging times. To those senior leaders who bear the heaviest responsibilities, these policy insights may chart a course forward.