deterrence

President Barack Obama delivers a statement regarding Iraq, prior to departure from the White House South Lawn aboard Marine One en route to Bismarck, N.D., June 13, 2014. (Official White House Photo by David Lienemann)

Barack Obama is not likely to be mistaken for Teddy Roosevelt. Yes, his foreign policy has been quite soft-spoken—especially when addressing openly hostile states such as Iran. But he has whittled America’s “big stick” down to kindling. While “resetting” with Russia and “engaging” with Iran, Mr. Obama has presided over a tremendous down-sizing of U.S.… Keep reading →

Laicie Heeley with Stimson

As the House and Senate gear up for votes in the coming days to fund the Defense Department, lawmakers are set to support a bow wave of costly nuclear weapons programs increasingly at odds with the needs of U.S. troops and the future threats that dominate their agenda. Notably for a president who famously championed… Keep reading →

Experimental Navy laser

WASHINGTON: How do you stop 1,000 missiles? Current missile defenses can’t. They’re designed to stop a small attack from a rogue state. But even rogue states like North Korea — let alone power players like China’s Second Artillery — can now throw more missiles at us than we have interceptors to shoot them down. That’s why the military, industry,… Keep reading →

Missile Defense Agency photo

WASHINGTON: North Korea can’t nuke the US, not yet. But boy dictator Kim Jong-un already has about a thousand ballistic missiles capable of reaching South Korea and, in some cases, Japan. Most are Scud-like weapons with conventional explosives but a few might be nuclear-tipped. Against a large-scale launch, former Pentagon strategist Van Jackson said this morning, the missile… Keep reading →

nato-logo

WASHINGTON: NATO is now taking cyber threats as seriously as the Russian tanks and nuclear weapons it was created to deter. But the alliance has a long way to go just to shore up its own network defenses, and it explicitly eschews any role on the offense. NATO has not even written a formal policy… Keep reading →

nato-logo

Jarno Limnéll is the Director of Cyber Security at McAfee (now part of Intel), a PhD in military science, and a former officer in the famously tough Finnish armed forces, where he spent five years as a strategic analyst. He spoke to us in June about the Russian threat in cyberspace, which many analysts consider far… Keep reading →

Test of a Navy Trident D5 submarine-launched ballistic missile.

The DC debate on the Navy’s new nuclear missile submarines has been about how we can possibly pay for them. In this op-ed, however, frequent Breaking Defense contributor Bob Butterworth takes a step back to look at a much bigger picture. The Navy’s recent admission that it can’t afford the Ohio Replacement Program (ORP) is… Keep reading →

DF-ST-82-03511

The Ukrainian crisis created by Russia’s aggressive adventurism has sparked much soul-searching among NATO’s commanders, western lawmakers and policymakers and the western defense world’s thinkerati. Should we bolster missile defenses in central Europe? What about the permanent US military presence in Europe? Has it gotten too small? Do we need to bolster America’s nuclear forces,… Keep reading →

Gen. Keith Alexander CyberCom NSA

CAPITOL HILL: On the day that China’s president took personal charge of his country’s new cyber body, pledging to make the People’s Republic of China a “cyber power,” the outgoing head of America’s Cyber Command laid out a clear red line that, if crossed, could lead to war. “If it destroys government or other networks,… Keep reading →

First thermonuclear bomb test

Bob Butterworth knows nuclear weapons. He know cyber weapons. He knows space. He knows intelligence. And Butterworth cares enough to take public risks, to speak plainly in hopes others will do the same and thus help the country find the best answers to tough problems. While the American public has little idea it’s happening, a… Keep reading →

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