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Statement Before the Senate Armed Services Committee on Recommendations for a Future National Defense Strategy
Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Senator John McCain and Ranking Member, Senator Jack Reed hosted a hearing for outside experts to explore recommendations for a future national defense strategy. CSBA President and CEO Dr. Thomas G. Mahnken was invited to give testimony.
Each year, the Department of Defense (DoD) submits Selected Acquisition Reports (SARs) to Congress detailing the status, plans, procurement quantities, and funding requirements for each Major Defense Acquisition Program (MDAP). These represent DoD’s largest and most expensive acquisition efforts. The most recent unclassified SARs, which were submitted in December 2016 and are consistent with the President’s FY 2018 budget request, include 87 programs, some of which extend more than 20 years into the future.
This study describes the challenges and opportunities America and its allies face in the Arctic and Antarctic and proposes new roles and missions, operational concepts, and capabilities U.S. naval and air forces should pursue to protect and further U.S. and allied national security interests in the high latitudes.
This follow-on study to the 2015 report “Winning the Airwaves: Restoring America’s Advantage in the Electromagnetic Spectrum” will describe how U.S. forces could create new options to counter “gray zone” and hybrid warfare being employed by Russia and China.
In 2013, CSBA released a report that recommended priorities for a force shaped to operate in the contested environments of the Asia–Pacific and other regions. This follow-on report recommends DoD shift its future force planning toward developing new operating concepts and capability mixes needed to deter, and if necessary defeat, aggression by China and Russia.
The United States has a long history of engaging in irregular wars and countering insurgencies, one that predates its independence. To understand what worked, what did not, and why, this study assesses the measures, both coercive and benign, that the United States has used in a limited number of pivotal cases to determine if U.S. irregular warfare and counterinsurgency (COIN) approaches have changed significantly over the past two centuries. It also makes recommendations for the future.