As the fourth comprehensive review of our military since the end of the Cold War, the Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) builds on our experience with the policy and forces of the 1991 Base Force Review, the 1993 Bottom-Up Review (BUR), and the 1995 Commission on Roles and Missions of the Armed Forces (CORM). As a result of those reviews, we made significant adjustments in our forces, procedures, and organizations. We have also accumulated a wealth of experience in a new and constantly changing security environment. That experience tells us that we have the finest military force in our nation's history, with unsurpassed professionalism and capability. Nevertheless, this is a propitious time to reexamine our assumptions, programs, and operations. Indeed, the rapid rate of change in the world since the end of the Cold War underscores the importance of undertaking such a reexamination on a regular basis. The QDR is required by the Military Force Structure Review Act, which was included as part of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1997. The Department of Defense designed the QDR to be a fundamental and comprehensive examination of America's defense needs from 1997 to 2015: potential threats, strategy, force structure, readiness posture, military modernization programs, defense infrastructure, and other elements of the defense program. The QDR is intended to provide a blueprint for a strategy-based, balanced, and affordable defense program.
Change--in international relations, in technology, and in society as a whole--has become the idiom of our age. One example of these changes has been an increasing recognition of the value of air and space assets for handling nearly every contingency from disaster relief to war and, onsequently, increasing demand for such assets. These developments have created both challenges and opportunities for the U.S. Air Force. This, the fourth volume in the Strategic Appraisal series, draws on the expertise of researchers from across RAND to explore both the challenges and opportunities that the U.S. Air Force faces as it strives to support the nation's interests in a challenging technological and security environment.Contributors examine the changing roles of air and space forces in U.S.national security strategy, the implications of new systems and technologiesfor military operations, and the role of nuclear weapons in U.S. securitystrategy. Contributors also discuss the status of major modernizationefforts within the Air Force, and the bill of health of the Air Force, asmeasured by its readiness to undertake its missions both today and in thefuture.
This updated edition incorporates lessons from the war in Afghanistan, other developemnts since September 11, and a critical assessment of the Bush administration's defense strategy and budget plan, both of which were formulated and publicly unveiled after the release of the book's first edition. "O'Hanlon has insightfully separated what the nation needs to maintain an adequate defense from what the military and its suppliers want, crafting a realistic and affordable proposal for defense spending for the coming decade." --Robert D. Reischauer, President, Urban Institute "The best unclassified study to date of the military implications of a China-Taiwan conflict for the United States. His sobering analysis makes a compelling case for a cautious arms sales policy toward Taiwan as well as prudent U.S. military planning." --Mike Mochizuki, George Washington University
Deterrence as a strategic concept evolved during the Cold War. During that period, deterrence strategy was aimed mainly at preventing aggression against the United States and its close allies by the hostile Communist power centers--the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) and its allies, Communist China and North Korea. In particular, the strategy was devised to prevent aggression involving nuclear attack by the USSR or China. Since the end of the Cold War, the risk of war among the major powers has subsided to the lowest point in modern history. Still, the changing nature of the threats to American and allied security interests has stimulated a considerable broadening of the deterrence concept. Post-Cold War Conflict Deterrence examines the meaning of deterrence in this new environment and identifies key elements of a post-Cold War deterrence strategy and the critical issues in devising such a strategy. It further examines the significance of these findings for the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps. Quantitative and qualitative measures to support judgments about the potential success or failure of deterrence are identified. Such measures will bear on the suitability of the naval forces to meet the deterrence objectives. The capabilities of U.S. naval forces that especially bear on the deterrence objectives also are examined. Finally, the book examines the utility of models, games, and simulations as decision aids in improving the naval forces' understanding of situations in which deterrence must be used and in improving the potential success of deterrence actions.
In the wake of the September 11 attacks and the ensuing war on terrorism, the United States began a massive buildup in its defense budget. However, there was little public debate about the possible alternatives to the sweeping budget increases proposed by the Bush administration. A useful guide to teachers, students, and the general reader interested in defense, this book lays out the best case for four different options, each of which could serve as the organizing principle for future U.S. defense plans and budgets. This Council Policy Initiative presents these choices as presidential speeches so that they can be read and understood by interested Americans. The speeches are preceded by a memo that explains the strengths, weaknesses, and politics of each alternative. The aim is to involve Americans in thinking about and debating their national security. Lawrence J. Korb is director of National Security Studies at the Council of Foreign Relations.
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