strategy

Amphibious operation  Exercise Cobra Gold 97

WASHINGTON: The conservative Heritage Foundation has published an ambitious Index of Military Strength, which — not surprisingly — finds that the United States military is not beefy enough to manage the many threats it faces around the world. The core finding of the well-written analysis is that the US military could handle two major theater wars… Keep reading →

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WASHINGTON: The Republican congressman who oversees the Navy actually likes Barack Obama’s 2016 defense budget — except for one small thing: It isn’t really a budget. “It would be almost a misnomer to call this a budget. It’s [just] numbers,” Rep. Randy Forbes told me this morning, in advance of tomorrow’s budget hearing. “If you… Keep reading →

Oil sea routes map

WASHINGTON: When President Obama released his new National Security Strategy last week, there was great gnashing of teeth from the GOP over one particular concept mentioned once in the strategy’s 29 pages: strategic patience. Sen. John McCain’s wingman, Lindsey Graham, launched the first strike with a tweet: I doubt ISIL, the Iranian mullahs, or Vladimir… Keep reading →

US Army photo

PENTAGON: As the US Army deploys more troops to the Pacific, it’s running into the limits of its long-range communications systems. The shortfall in comms capacity is not only becoming an issue as the service ramps up its “Pacific Pathways” exercises with Asian partners: It is also raisibng concerns about the network’s resiliency against a… Keep reading →

WASHINGTON: There’s no one thing that keeps the Pentagon’s chief of intelligence up at night. There’s half-a-dozen things — terrorism, cybersecurity, Iran, North Korea, Russia, and China — but Mike Vickers has a six-point plan to counter them. “The big challenge we face is really in the aggregation of challenges,” the under secretary for intelligence… Keep reading →

F-35 arrives at Luke Air Force Base

PENTAGON: The Pentagon giveth, and the Pentagon taketh away. While the Defense Department is shrinking or shuttering roughly 30 facilities across Europe, the real story isn’t a downsizing: It’s a shift. Even as the US consolidates facilities in Western Europe — some of which date to World War II — it’s building up infrastructure in Eastern Europe to contain the… Keep reading →

Mideast Syria Airstrikes

  WASHINGTON: The enemy of my enemy is….who exactly? That is the question U.S. Central Command planners confronted recently when they targeted the Khorasan Group, a hardcore Al Qaeda cell in Syria suspected of planning terrorist attacks against the United States and Europe. Not surprisingly, the U.S. strikes also killed fighters from the Al-Nusra Front,… Keep reading →

CSBA graphic

WASHINGTON: Someone shoots a cruise missile at you. How far away would you like to stop it: over 200 miles out or less than 35? If you answered “over 200,” congratulations, you’re thinking like the US Navy, which has spent billions of dollars over decades to develop ever more sophisticated anti-missile defenses. According to Bryan… Keep reading →

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[UPDDATED with Hagel memo & expert comment] REAGAN LIBRARY: After months of build-up, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel formally launched the military’s quest for a combination of new technologies to maintain America’s military supremacy over the next 20 years in the face of Russian and Chinese challenges. In a speech before the second Reagan National Defense Forum here, Hagel divulged… Keep reading →

President Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping

WASHINGTON: New agreements between the US and China will reduce the risks of accidental war in the western Pacific. That’s good news — but don’t imagine for a minute that it changes the fundamentals of the competition. Chinese president Xi Jinping’s summit deals with President Obama and Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe represent Xi’s tactical… Keep reading →

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