"Nobody does defense policy better than CSBA. Their work on strategic and budgetary topics manages to combine first-rate quality and in-depth research with timeliness and accessibility—which is why so many professionals consider their products indispensable." – Gideon Rose, Editor, Foreign Affairs.

Search Publications
Date Range

Understanding NATO’s Concept for Deterrence and Defense of the Euro-Atlantic Area

NATO, the largest and most powerful military alliance in history, turned seventy-five in April. In July, the leaders of NATO will return to the city where its founding document, the Washington Treaty, was signed in 1949. Most people have heard of NATO. Fewer know its most important document is the Strategic Concept, which is updated every decade or so, and sets the Alliance’s strategy. An even smaller group know about NATO’s “Concept for Deterrence and Defence of the Euro-Atlantic Area.”


More of the Same? The Future of the Russian Military And Its Ability to Change

Assessing the type of threat that Russia is likely to pose in the aftermath of the war in Ukraine is a critical challenge for the United States and its allies. What will the Russian military look like in the future? Some argue that the Russian military will remain a significant threat – and perhaps become a very different and even more serious one. This argument holds that the Russian military will reconstitute in a relatively short time frame and may reform according to lessons learned during the war in Ukraine. Others argue that the Russian military will pose a far less formidable conventional threat going forward. Not only has the war against Ukraine exposed fundamental weaknesses in the Russian military, the argument goes, but Moscow’s ability to address those weaknesses will be limited by available manpower, sanctions, and export controls.


2023 Annual Report

For nearly three decades, CSBA has provided consistent, high-quality, and innovative research on defense strategy, budgets, and the security environment.


An Ongoing and Necessary Renaissance: NATO’s Nuclear Posture

President Putin’s nuclear saber-rattling while the war in Ukraine has raged, along with lurid nuclear threats by Russian officials and propagandists, have once again focused attention on NATO’s nuclear mission. As the alliance approaches a summit in Washington later this summer, it is an appropriate time to review its nuclear posture.


Strengthening the Phalanx: Layered, Comprehensive, and Distributed Air and Missile Defense in the Indo-Pacific

One of the most critical operational challenges the United States is likely to confront in a future conflict, particularly in the Indo-Pacific theater, is the threat of massed precision-guided air and missile attacks on overseas ports, bases, and other vital facilities. DoD has invested significant resources to defend against ballistic missile attacks on the United States, as well as its forward bases and forward-operating forces. However, it cannot still defeat large numbers of ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, and unmanned aerial systems.


Inconsistent Congress: Analysis of the 2024 Defense Budget Request

After increasing the Department of Defense (DoD) budget in real terms during seven of the past eight fiscal years, Congress has now pivoted toward restraining spending by passing the Fiscal Responsibility Act of 2023. Approved in early June as part of the debt ceiling deal, the law imposes a liberating limit on defense. It unshackles defense spending from parity with nondefense spending but still caps military budgets at or near current spending levels for the next two fiscal years while brandishing the threat of a lowered defense cap and potential sequestration if Congress delays in passing full-year appropriations for any budget account.