The United States faces a very different set of security challenges than it has since the Cold War. Great power competitors such as China and Russia improved their military capabilities over the last two decades while America focused on Middle East insurgencies, and now appear willing to challenge the international order.
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Over the last fifteen years, the Department of Defense spent more than $24 billion buying a mix of capabilities to defeat guided missile threats to U.S. and partner naval forces and land installations. Despite DoD's urgency, these investments have not resulted in air and missile defenses with sufficient capacity to counter large salvos of ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, and other precision-guided munitions (PGMs) that can now be launched by America's enemies.
Today the Navy and Marine Corps are facing a fundamental choice: maintain current levels of forward presence and risk breaking the force or reduce presence and restore readiness through adequate training, maintenance, and time at home.
In his testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee, Robert Martinage argues that the roles and missions of the Armed Forces need to be realigned to better address U.S. national security challenges and preserve U.S. military superiority in the decades ahead. His remarks focus on three broad areas for change: the possible creation of new Services for space, cyber, and special operations; the need for increased Service specialization; and the concept of “competitive jointness,” meaning encouraging healthy intra- and inter-Service rivalry to foster innovation.
In his remarks before the House Armed Services Seapower and Power Projection Forces Subcommittee, Bryan Clark argues that American undersea dominance will increasingly be contested by competitors who are pursuing new detection technologies while growing and quieting their own submarine fleets. To affordably sustain its undersea advantage well into this century, the U.S. Navy must accelerate innovation in undersea warfare by evolving the role of manned submarines and exploiting emerging technologies to field a new "family of undersea systems."
In his remarks before the House Armed Services Committee, Mark Gunzinger argues that the Air Force has an opportunity to create a family of systems that will maintain America's long-range strike advantage well into the future. The U.S. military needs a penetrating bomber that is large enough and has sufficient range to ensure it is able to deliver high volumes of munitions deep into denied areas. Failing to field a long-range strike platform or procuring it only in very small numbers would extend America's long-range strike capability gap, allowing future enemies more time to mature capabilities that threaten our ability to project power.