Center for a New American Security

Marines use off-the-shelf Samsung tablets to coordinate operations from the back of a V-22 Osprey in an Infantry Officer Course experiment.

WASHINGTON: High-ranking officials and blue-ribbon commissions have spent decades trying to reform how the Defense Department develops new technologies, buys them, sustains them, and controls their export abroad. Almost everyone has failed. Why? Ben Fitzgerald says they’re thinking too small. “Hey guys, this is actually a strategic issue. It’s not just an acquisition issue or… Keep reading →

Army Strykers in Baghdad Iraq -army.mil-2007-05-14-145757

High-tech warfare at knife-fight ranges: that’s the ugly future of urban combat. If you thought Baghdad was bad, with its roughly six million people, imagine a “megacity” of 10 or 20 million, where the slums have more inhabitants than some countries. Imagine a city of the very near future where suspicious locals post every US… Keep reading →

Reaping the Benefits of a Global Defense Industry

Greg Sanders CSIS photo

  As the Defense Department’s budget goes down, the number of contracts awarded without competitive bids is going up. The share of contracts awarded without competition has risen from 39 percent in 2009 to 42 percent in 2012, according to a report I co-authored with Jesse Ellman and Rhys McCormick on DoD Contracting Trends. The news for… Keep reading →

Cover art from the new CNAS study, "20YY: Preparing for War in the Robotic Age."

After our story yesterday on Robert Work and Shawn Brimley‘s disconcerting vision of future robotic war, we got a thoughtful response from Brimley that, with his permission, we’ve published below. The Editors. Bob and I wrote the paper because we feel strongly that there are some powerful trends affecting the relationship between technology and military… Keep reading →

A Croatian soldier and a Minnesota National Guardsman train together for Afghanistan.

Yesterday, four mid-grade military officers — one from each armed service – made a remarkable public recommendation to their boss, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel: It’s time to force the four services back into clearly demarcated “lanes” and reduce overlap between them as budgets shrink and competition escalates. They focused on three high-priority areas: Cybersecurity, the… Keep reading →

Northrop Grumman's MADDS armed robot (based on an earlier unarmed 'bot called CaMEL) captured in the act of firing.

More robots, fewer people. That’s where the US military is headed in the future. But what kind of robots? Army Gen. Robert Cone, four-star commander of the powerful Training and Doctrine Command (aka TRADOC), said that the service is studying how robots could help replace 25 percent of the soldiers in each of its 4,000-strong combat brigades. That’s because the… Keep reading →

Under Secretary of the Army, Dr. Joseph W. Westphal, pins brigadier general rank on Brig. Gen. Burt K. Thompson with his wife Kala Thompson April13, 2012, at the Fort Myer Officer's Club on Joint Base Myer Henderson Hall, Va. Thompson's oldest daughter... http://www.army.mil/article/78018/Thompson_promoted_to_brigadier_general_in_the_U_S__Army/

….and He shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats…. -–  Matthew 25:32 (King James Version) The military’s personnel system does lots of stupid things, like sending Arabic speakers to Korea or forcing out skilled commanders at age 50. But of all our self-inflicted wounds, argues a forthcoming… Keep reading →

Air Force Cyber Command online for future operations

WASHINGTON: Hey, defense contractors! Open source software is not your enemy. In fact, far from undercutting your profits, it may increase them – and increase the US military’s capabilities at the same time. That’s a central concept in the Center for a New American Security’s recently established Technology and Security program, which aims to shake… Keep reading →

WASHINGTON: The Defense Department will create at least five defense budgets this year as a result of the Strategic Choices and Management Review, Deputy Defense Secretary Ash Carter said today, and some of those alternative plans “could entail significant risk.” Carter appeared to engage in something we have begun seeing from a range of senior uniformed… Keep reading →

Wesbush

WASHINGTON: Instead of trying to cram a $500 billion force into a $450 billion budget and hoping Congress passes sequester relief, the Defense Department needs to go back to the drawing board. That’s the consensus of two top defense experts from either side of the government-industry gap — former Obama and Clinton appointee Michele Flournoy… Keep reading →

exhausted-soldier

CAPITOL HILL: The best case for sequester is still a disaster – but we’re not going to get the best case. That’s the common denominator from a range of budget options rolled out today by an extraordinary alliance of four thinktanks. Their consensus recommendations to cut military readiness, Army brigades, Navy carriers, Air Force ICBMs,… Keep reading →

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