National Security Network

Military

Military Military

Restore American Military Power

Military
Our military is second to none, but eight years of negligence, lack of accountability, and a reckless war in Iraq have left our ground forces facing shortfalls in both recruitment and readiness. Every service is out of balance and ill-prepared. We need a new strategy to give the military the tools it needs for the challenges we face today. And we need leadership that meets our obligations to the men and women who put their lives on the line.
Read the full paper: The Progressive Approach: The Military »

Military

Defense Spending Realities

Report 26 July 2011
Spending is the watchword in Washington today. Last night President Obama addressed the nation on his plans for reducing the deficit, and today incoming chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Martin Dempsey testified before the Senate Armed Services Committee, where he explained the effects of budgetary constraints on the military. This involves facing the reality that defense spending, including the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, has contributed to the deficit and should play a role in fixing the shortfall. It is also the case that there are right and wrong ways to reform defense spending. Reductions must be tied to a larger strategic vision that chooses what missions and capabilities are necessary to ensure American security. A “hollow” force is a danger if reductions come thoughtlessly or without matching capabilities to foreign policy appetites. In fact, changes in defense spending under President Obama have only slowed the rate of growth in the defense budgets, but have not yet produced any actual cuts. The military does face readiness issues, which can be traced back to wars fought with inadequate support under the Bush administration.
More »
Military

Defaulting on American Power

Report 14 July 2011
The debt default showdown in the U.S. is reaching new heights as the latest negotiating session yesterday evening ended in heightened tension. Meanwhile Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke warned yesterday of a “huge financial calamity” if the debt ceiling is not increased. And the Moody’s rating agency’s threat of a credit downgrade highlights the real consequences of failing to pay America’s bills. This is not only an economic issue. Republicans and Democrats, Bernanke, and America's credit rating agencies have all warned about the dire consequences of defaulting on our nation's debt. America’s power and role in the world is based off of its economic strength. Further, these dangerous games hardly serve as a good advertisement for the American model of democracy and effective governance as many countries around the world reconsider their models. We should not be playing games with American power.
More »
Military

“Strategy Wears a Dollar Sign”

Report 11 July 2011
With budget talks stalled and ambitions shrinking, it’s time for bipartisan agreement that defense spending, 55 percent of all discretionary spending and more than double what it was ten years ago, shares in the cuts. As Adm. Mullen has said, policymakers need to answer hard questions about military strategy, matching our means to our ends and securing our economic and national security.
More »
Military

Hurlburt: Nobody Puts Petraeus in a Corner

News The American Prospect 30 June 2011
Military

Conservatives Offer up Defense Cuts

Report 27 June 2011
Intense efforts are underway to avoid defaulting on the nation’s debt. The talks are now focused on the largest single element of discretionary spending, one which has nearly doubled in the last decade: the defense budget. According to the Washington Post, an increasing number of conservatives agree with the president that reforms to defense spending must be part of the overall solution to reducing the national debt. This shift comes as the public questions how America’s military commitments abroad are paying off—something President Obama acknowledged in his speech last week when he announced the withdrawal of the surge troops in Afghanistan. “America, it is time to focus on nation building here at home,” he said. Leon Panetta will soon take over as secretary of defense amid a review of roles and missions, requiring that as we rethink budgets and spending, we also rethink the strategy that determines how and where America uses its military. Panetta will also be forced to deal with a Congress that says it wants to reduce spending, but still funds unwanted programs that several defense secretaries before him have tried to weed out.
More »
Military

Libya Questions and Answers

Report 22 June 2011
From Capitol Hill to the halls of NATO, debate over Libya continues to combine serious efforts at oversight, profound philosophical choices and naked political gamesmanship. As the House and Senate consider measures formally authorizing the U.S. role, and House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) suggests the House may not support his own proposal, NSN examines six factual questions about what’s happening on the ground now and what sort of scenarios may arise moving forward.
More »
Military

Korb & Stokes: We need a weapons 'BRAC'

News The Baltimore Sun 15 June 2011
Military

Hurlburt: Peace Is Our Profession

News Democracy Journal 14 June 2011