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Examining the Iran Deal and the Military Balance in the Middle East

In this testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee, Ambassador Eric Edelman asserts that the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) to resolve the Iranian nuclear issue is deeply flawed because it concedes an enrichment capacity that is too large, sunset clauses that are too short, a verification regime that is too leaky, and enforcement mechanisms that are too suspect. He asserts that the prospect of Iranian nuclear latency will, in turn, put the Middle East on the path to a catastrophic arms race. Ultimately, Ambassador Edelman recommends that Congress disapprove the agreement in order to allow for a more stringent deal to be renegotiated.


The Role of Surface Forces in Presence, Deterrence, and Warfighting

In this testimony before the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Seapower and Projection Forces, Bryan Clark argues that the Navy needs a new approach to surface warfare in light of new security challenges. Today's security environment is not as benign or stable as it was 15 years ago, when the Navy planned a "network-centric" approach to surface warfare supported by a family of new ships.


Growing Nuclear Capabilities in the Middle East and Their Implications for U.S. Security

This testimony delivered before the Senate Armed Forces Subcommittee on Strategic Forces provides an overview of Israeli and Iranian capabilities and doctrines. It assesses prospective characteristics of a nuclear competition between these two countries, as well as those of a prospective “n-player” competition, should Iran’s acquisition of nuclear weapons lead other states in the region to follow suit. The testimony concludes with some thoughts on what this means for the United States, to include the strategic choices we confront.


Alternative Budgets and Strategic Choices

Regardless of the budget level Congress ultimately sets for defense, choosing where to invest or divest should be informed by the external security challenges we face and the choices we make about strategy. In this regard, likely future operating environments may serve as a useful lens for evaluating programs. In particular, forces and capabilities most viable to project power in contested environments may represent areas for preserving or expanding, while those that have been designed for relatively benign operating environments may be targets for divestiture.


Joint Think Tank Strategic Choices Exercise

What our exercise helps illuminate—and what my colleagues will speak to in their testimony—are the core capabilities the military must protect, and, in some cases, increase investments in regardless of the budgetary constraints imposed.