Secretary Hagel recently made waves in Army circles by suggesting that the Army leverage its missile forces to resume the old mission of coastal defense. In this brief, CSBA Research Fellow Eric Lindsey argues that Army missiles forces can do far more than defend coastlines.
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The proliferation of precision-strike capabilities may soon challenge the U.S. military’s ability to project power overseas and alter America’s role in the world, argues a new report published by the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments.
How valid is the growing concern among senior U.S. leaders that state and non-state actors will become increasingly capable of executing cyber attacks with catastrophic consequences? Does the expansion of the military competition into the cyber domain represent a major shift in the character of warfare?
Emerging directed energy technologies have the potential to transition to real-world military capabilities over the next twenty years; and become a particularly promising source of operational advantage for the U.S. military.
In 1992, the Office of Net Assessment (ONA), Office of the Secretary of Defense, began circulating an assessment of a prospective late-twentieth-century military-technical revolution (MTR). Soviet military theorists had been discussing the possibility of a third twentieth-century revolution in military affairs (RMA) since the mid-1970s. Written by (then Army Lieutenant Colonel) Andrew F. Krepinevich, ONA’s MTR assessment sought to explore the hypothesis that Soviet theorists were right in predicting that advances in precision munitions, wide-area sensors, and computerized command and control (C2) would bring about fundamental changes in the conduct of war. As Marshal Nikolai Ogarkov, then chief of the Soviet General Staff, observed in 1984, these developments in nonnuclear means of destruction promise to “make it possible to sharply increase (by at least an order of magnitude) the destructive potential of conventional weapons, bringing them closer, so to speak, to weapons of mass destruction in terms of effectiveness.” The Soviets introduced the term “reconnaissance-strike complex” (or “RUK” from the Russian pекогносцировочно-yдарный комплекс) to describe the integration of missiles with precision-guided sub-munitions, area sensors such as the airborne Pave Mover SAR/MTI (synthetic-aperture radar/ moving-target-indicator) radar, and automated C2.
Mr. Chairman and Members of the Commission, thank you for inviting me to testify at today’s hearing. I will confine my comments to the Commission’s questions on the overall context of the People’s Republic of China’s (PRC’s) emerging use of orbital systems to support military modernization efforts such as the country’s emerging anti-access/area denial (A2/AD) capabilities in the western Pacific, including the impact of the PRC’s space program on the Chinese concept of Comprehensive National Power (CNP). Regarding the role that the PRC’s space assets might play in U.S.-China conflict scenarios in the 2012-2020 timeframe, I will assess the likelihood of such conflicts occurring and argue that China’s own growing military use of space may constrain their counterspace options in the long run to a greater extent than some of our war gaming has suggested.