Renewed Great Power Competition: Implications for Defense

The post-Cold War era of international relations—which began in the early 1990s and is sometimes referred to as the unipolar moment (with the United States as the unipolar power)—showed initial signs of fading in 2006-2008, and by 2014 had given way to a fundamentally different situation of renewed great power competition with China and Russia… Continue Reading Renewed Great Power Competition: Implications for Defense

Changes in the Arctic

The diminishment of Arctic sea ice has led to increased human activities in the Arctic, and has heightened interest in, and concerns about, the region’s future. The United States, by virtue of Alaska, is an Arctic country and has substantial interests in the region. The seven other Arctic states are Canada, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Finland,… Continue Reading Changes in the Arctic

Crafting Strategy for Irregular Warfare: A Framework for Analysis and Action

The 2018 U.S. National Defense Strategy made headlines by officially downgrading terrorism as a national security priority in favor of “inter-state strategic competition.” Many interpreted the statement as signifying a return to “conventional combat,” yet a closer reading suggests that even state-based competition is likely to be “irregular.” Much like insurgent adversaries, states blend separate… Continue Reading Crafting Strategy for Irregular Warfare: A Framework for Analysis and Action

Latin America 2020: Challenges to U.S. National Security Interests

U.S. national security interests in Latin America are undermined by three key threats: transnational criminal organizations, which exploit weak levels of governance across the majority of countries in the region; extra-regional actors, which fill the vacuum created by U.S. distraction and inattention to its neighborhood; and finally, a number of regional political actors embracing ideological… Continue Reading Latin America 2020: Challenges to U.S. National Security Interests

System Overload: Can China’s Military Be Distracted in a War over Taiwan?

A war with Taiwan remains the primary contingency of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA). While the near-term prospects of China initiating a war are low due to the enormous economic costs and military risks, the PLA must still prepare to compel Taiwan’s leaders to accept unification or, barring that, to seize and occupy the island.… Continue Reading System Overload: Can China’s Military Be Distracted in a War over Taiwan?

Striking the Balance: US Army Force Posture in Europe, 2028

Within the context of Europe, the US Army must develop a force posture that best navigates the tensions between deterring or defeating armed conflict at an acceptable cost, successfully competing below armed conflict, and maintaining global responsiveness and institutional flexibility through the global operating model and dynamic force employment. While Russia’s economy, and consequently military… Continue Reading Striking the Balance: US Army Force Posture in Europe, 2028

China Naval Modernization: Implications for U.S. Navy Capabilities

In an era of renewed great power competition, China’s military modernization effort, including its naval modernization effort, has become the top focus of U.S. defense planning and budgeting. China’s navy has become a formidable military force within China’s near-seas region, and it is conducting a growing number of operations in more-distant waters, including the broader… Continue Reading China Naval Modernization: Implications for U.S. Navy Capabilities

Renewed Great Power Competition: Implications for Defense

This report provides a brief overview of implications for U.S. defense of the shift in the international environment to a situation of renewed great power competition with China and Russia. The issue for Congress is how U.S. defense planning should respond to this shift, and whether to approve, reject, or modify the Trump Administration’s proposed… Continue Reading Renewed Great Power Competition: Implications for Defense

Arms Control and Nonproliferation: A Catalog of Treaties and Agreements – March 2020 Edition

Arms control and nonproliferation efforts are two of the tools that the United States has occasionally used to implement its national security strategy. Although some believe these tools do little to restrain the behavior of U.S. adversaries, while doing too much to restrain U.S. military forces and operations, many others see them as an effective… Continue Reading Arms Control and Nonproliferation: A Catalog of Treaties and Agreements – March 2020 Edition