The experts raise many provocative questions and varying conclusions about the problems and prospects for the United States and for the post-Cold War era. Advanced undergraduate and graduate students and teachers should find that this hard-hitting analysis stimulates discussion, and military experts and policymakers should find this of real interest also.
The Balkans, the Middle East, and Russia all present considerable defense planning difficulties with no obvious solutions. The Balkans represent the clearest immediate danger, as the weight of history and current political ambitions threaten to destabilize Europe's southeastern flank. In the mid-term range are Middle Eastern concerns such as water shortages, border disputes, and new rivalries, all of which unbalance an area whose oil reserves fuel the world economy. Finally, the Russian military collapse suggests that the future Russian threat may result more from national weakness than from strength.