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    • REBUILDING AMERICA’S DEFENSESStrategy, Forces and Resources For a New Century A Report of The Project for the New American Century September 2000
    • ABOUT THE PROJECT FOR THE NEW AMERICAN CENTURYEstablished in the spring of 1997, the Project for the New American Century is a non-profit, educational organization whose goal is to promote American global leadership.The Project is an initiative of the New Citizenship Project. William Kristol is chairmanof the Project, and Robert Kagan, Devon Gaffney Cross, Bruce P. Jackson and John R.Bolton serve as directors. Gary Schmitt is executive director of the Project. “As the 20th century draws to a close, the United States stands as the world’s most preeminent power. Having led the West to victory in the Cold War, America faces an opportunity and a challenge: Does the United States have the vision to build upon the achievement of past decades? Does the United States have the resolve to shape a new century favorable to American principles and interests? “[What we require is] a military that is strong and ready to meet both present and future challenges; a foreign policy that boldly and purposefully promotes American principles abroad; and national leadership that accepts the United States’ global responsibilities. “Of course, the United States must be prudent in how it exercises its power. But we cannot safely avoid the responsibilities of global leadership of the costs that are associated with its exercise. America has a vital role in maintaining peace and security in Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. If we shirk our responsibilities, we invite challenges to our fundamental interests. The history of the 20th century should have taught us that it is important to shape circumstances before crises emerge, and to meet threats before they become dire. The history of the past century should have taught us to embrace the cause of American leadership.” – From the Project’s founding Statement of Principles ____PROJECT FOR THE NEW AMERICAN CENTURY____ 1150 Seventeenth Street, N.W., Suite 510, Washington, D.C. 20036 Telephone: (202) 293-4983 / Fax: (202) 293-4572
    • REBUILDING AMERICA’S DEFENSESStrategy, Forces and Resources For a New Century DONALD KAGAN GARY SCHMITT Project Co-Chairmen THOMAS DONNELLY Principal Author
    • REBUILDING AMERICA’S DEFENSES Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century CONTENTSIntroduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . iKey Findings . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ivI. Why Another Defense Review? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1II. Four Essential Missions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5III. Repositioning Today’s Force . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14IV. Rebuilding Today’s Armed Forces . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22V. Creating Tomorrow’s Dominant Force . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50VI. Defense Spending . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 69Project Participants
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century INTRODUCTION The Project for the New American Either alternative seemed to usCentury was established in the spring of shortsighted. The United States is the1997. From its inception, the Project has world’s only superpower, combiningbeen concerned with the decline in the preeminent military power, globalstrength of America’s defenses, and in the technological leadership, and the world’sproblems this would create for the exercise largest economy. Moreover, America standsof American leadership around the globe at the head of a system of alliances whichand, ultimately, for the preservation of includes the world’s other leadingpeace. democratic powers. At present the United States faces no global rival. America’s Our concerns were reinforced by the grand strategy should aim to preserve andtwo congressionally-mandated defense extend this advantageous position as far intostudies that appeared soon thereafter: the the future as possible. There are, however,Pentagon’s Quadrennial Defense Review potentially powerful states dissatisfied with(May 1997) and the report of the National the current situation and eager to change it,Defense Panel (December 1997). Both if they can, in directions that endanger thestudies assumed that U.S. defense budgets relatively peaceful, prosperous and freewould remain flat or continue to shrink. As condition the world enjoys today. Up toa result, the defense plans and now, they have been deterred from doing sorecommendations outlined in the two reports by the capability and global presence ofwere fashioned with such budget constraints American military power. But, as thatin mind. Broadly speaking, the QDR power declines, relatively and absolutely,stressed current military requirements at the the happy conditions that follow from it willexpense of future defense needs, while the be inevitably undermined.NDP’s report emphasized future needs byunderestimating today’s defense Preserving the desirable strategicresponsibilities. situation in which the United States now finds itself requires a globally preeminent Although the QDR and the report of the military capability both today and in theNDP proposed different policies, they future. But years of cuts in defenseshared one underlying feature: the gap spending have eroded the Americanbetween resources and strategy should be military’s combat readiness, and put inresolved not by increasing resources but by jeopardy the Pentagon’s plans forshortchanging strategy. America’s armed maintaining military superiority in the yearsforces, it seemed, could either prepare for ahead. Increasingly, the U.S. military hasthe future by retreating from its role as the found itself undermanned, inadequatelyessential defender of today’s global security equipped and trained, straining to handleorder, or it could take care of current contingency operations, and ill-prepared tobusiness but be unprepared for tomorrow’s adapt itself to the revolution in militarythreats and tomorrow’s battlefields. affairs. Without a well-conceived defense policy and an appropriate increase in i
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurydefense spending, the United States has been of the DPG, in our judgment, remain sound.letting its ability to take full advantage of the And what Secretary Cheney said at the timeremarkable strategic opportunity at hand slip in response to the DPG’s critics remains trueaway. today: “We can either sustain the [armed] forces we require and remain in a position to With this in mind, we began a project in help shape things for the better, or we canthe spring of 1998 to examine the country’s throw that advantage away. [But] thatdefense plans and resource requirements. would only hasten the day when we faceWe started from the premise that U.S. greater threats, at higher costs and furthermilitary capabilities should be sufficient to risk to American lives.”support an American grand strategycommitted to building upon this The project proceeded by holding aunprecedented opportunity. We did not series of seminars. We asked outstandingaccept pre-ordained constraints that defense specialists to write papers to explorefollowed from assumptions about what the a variety of topics: the future missions andcountry might or might not be willing to requirements of the individual militaryexpend on its defenses. services, the role of the reserves, nuclear strategic doctrine and missile defenses, the In broad terms, we saw the project as defense budget and prospects for militarybuilding upon the defense strategy outlined modernization, the state (training andby the Cheney Defense Department in the readiness) of today’s forces, the revolutionwaning days of the Bush Administration. in military affairs, and defense-planning forThe Defense Policy Guidance (DPG) drafted theater wars, small wars and constabularyin the early months operations. The papers were circulated to aof 1992 provided a At present the group of participants, chosen for theirblueprint for United States experience and judgment in defense affairs.maintaining U.S. faces no (The list of participants may be found at thepreeminence, end of this report.) Each paper then becameprecluding the rise global rival. the basis for discussion and debate. Ourof a great power America’s goal was to use the papers to assistrival, and shaping grand strategy deliberation, to generate and test ideas, andthe international should aim to to assist us in developing our final report.security order in While each paper took as its starting point aline with American preserve and shared strategic point of view, we made noprinciples and extend this attempt to dictate the views or direction ofinterests. Leaked advantageous the individual papers. We wanted as fullbefore it had been and as diverse a discussion as possible.formally approved, position as farthe document was into the future Our report borrows heavily from thosecriticized as an as possible. deliberations. But we did not ask seminareffort by “cold participants to “sign-off” on the final report.warriors” to keep defense spending high and We wanted frank discussions and we soughtcuts in forces small despite the collapse of to avoid the pitfalls of trying to produce athe Soviet Union; not surprisingly, it was consensual but bland product. We wanted tosubsequently buried by the new try to define and describe a defense strategyadministration. that is honest, thoughtful, bold, internally consistent and clear. And we wanted to Although the experience of the past spark a serious and informed discussion, theeight years has modified our understanding essential first step for reaching soundof particular military requirements for conclusions and for gaining public support.carrying out such a strategy, the basic tenets ii
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century New circumstances make us think that were forced to work from many untestedthe report might have a more receptive assumptions about the nature of a worldaudience now than in recent years. For the without a superpower rival. We have afirst time since the late 1960s the federal much better idea today of what ourgovernment is running a surplus. For most responsibilities are, what the threats to usof the 1990s, Congress and the White House might be in this new security environment,gave balancing the federal budget a higher and what it will take to secure the relativepriority than funding national security. In peace and stability. We believe our reportfact, to a significant degree, the budget was reflects and benefits from that decade’sbalanced by a combination of increased tax worth of experience.revenues and cuts in defense spending. Thesurplus expected in federal revenues over Our report is published in a presidentialthe next decade, however, removes any need election year. The new administration willto hold defense spending to some need to produce a second Quadrennialpreconceived low level. Defense Review shortly after it takes office. We hope that the Project’s report will be Moreover, the American public and its useful as a road map for the nation’selected representatives have become immediate and future defense plans. Weincreasingly aware of the declining state of believe we have set forth a defense programthe U.S. military. News stories, Pentagon that is justified by the evidence, rests on anreports, congressional testimony and honest examination of the problems andanecdotal accounts from members of the possibilities, and does not flinch from facingarmed services paint a disturbing picture of the true cost of security. We hope it willan American military that is troubled by inspire careful consideration and seriouspoor enlistment and retention rates, shoddy discussion. The post-Cold War world willhousing, a shortage of spare parts and not remain a relatively peaceful place if weweapons, and diminishing combat readiness. continue to neglect foreign and defense matters. But serious attention, careful Finally, this report comes after a thought, and the willingness to devotedecade’s worth of experience in dealing with adequate resources to maintainingthe post-Cold War world. Previous efforts America’s military strength can make theto fashion a defense strategy that would world safer and American strategic interestsmake sense for today’s security environment more secure now and in the future. Donald Kagan Gary Schmitt Project Co-Chairmen Thomas Donnelly Principal Author iii
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century KEY FINDINGS This report proceeds from the belief that The challenge for the coming century is toAmerica should seek to preserve and extend preserve and enhance this “Americanits position of global leadership by peace.”maintaining the preeminence of U.S.military forces. Today, the United States Yet unless the United States maintainshas an unprecedented strategic opportunity. sufficient military strength, this opportunityIt faces no immediate great-power will be lost. And in fact, over the pastchallenge; it is blessed with wealthy, decade, the failure to establish a securitypowerful and democratic allies in every part strategy responsive to new realities and toof the world; it is in the midst of the longest provide adequate resources for the full rangeeconomic expansion in its history; and its of missions needed to exercise U.S. globalpolitical and economic principles are almost leadership has placed the American peace atuniversally embraced. At no time in history growing risk. This report attempts to definehas the international security order been as those requirements. In particular, we needconducive to American interests and ideals. to:ESTABLISH FOUR CORE MISSIONS for U.S. military forces:• defend the American homeland;• fight and decisively win multiple, simultaneous major theater wars;• perform the “constabulary” duties associated with shaping the security environment in critical regions;• transform U.S. forces to exploit the “revolution in military affairs;”To carry out these core missions, we need to provide sufficient force and budgetaryallocations. In particular, the United States must:MAINTAIN NUCLEAR STRATEGIC SUPERIORITY, basing the U.S. nuclear deterrent upon aglobal, nuclear net assessment that weighs the full range of current and emerging threats,not merely the U.S.-Russia balance.RESTORE THE PERSONNEL STRENGTH of today’s force to roughly the levels anticipated inthe “Base Force” outlined by the Bush Administration, an increase in active-duty strengthfrom 1.4 million to 1.6 million.REPOSITION U.S. FORCES to respond to 21st century strategic realities by shiftingpermanently-based forces to Southeast Europe and Southeast Asia, and by changing navaldeployment patterns to reflect growing U.S. strategic concerns in East Asia. iv
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New CenturyMODERNIZE CURRENT U.S. FORCES SELECTIVELY, proceeding with the F-22 program whileincreasing purchases of lift, electronic support and other aircraft; expanding submarineand surface combatant fleets; purchasing Comanche helicopters and medium-weightground vehicles for the Army, and the V-22 Osprey “tilt-rotor” aircraft for the MarineCorps.CANCEL “ROADBLOCK” PROGRAMS such as the Joint Strike Fighter, CVX aircraft carrier,and Crusader howitzer system that would absorb exorbitant amounts of Pentagon fundingwhile providing limited improvements to current capabilities. Savings from these canceledprograms should be used to spur the process of military transformation.DEVELOP AND DEPLOY GLOBAL MISSILE DEFENSES to defend the American homeland andAmerican allies, and to provide a secure basis for U.S. power projection around the world.CONTROL THE NEW “INTERNATIONAL COMMONS” OF SPACE AND “CYBERSPACE,” and pavethe way for the creation of a new military service – U.S. Space Forces – with the mission ofspace control.EXPLOIT THE “REVOLUTION IN MILITARY AFFAIRS” to insure the long-term superiority ofU.S. conventional forces. Establish a two-stage transformation process which• maximizes the value of current weapons systems through the application of advanced technologies, and,• produces more profound improvements in military capabilities, encourages competition between single services and joint-service experimentation efforts.INCREASE DEFENSE SPENDING gradually to a minimum level of 3.5 to 3.8 percent of grossdomestic product, adding $15 billion to $20 billion to total defense spending annually. Fulfilling these requirements is essential choices. They are also false economies.if America is to retain its militarily dominant The “savings” from withdrawing from thestatus for the coming decades. Conversely, Balkans, for example, will not free upthe failure to meet any of these needs must anywhere near the magnitude of fundsresult in some form of strategic retreat. At needed for military modernization orcurrent levels of defense spending, the only transformation. But these are falseoption is to try ineffectually to “manage” economies in other, more profound ways asincreasingly large risks: paying for today’s well. The true cost of not meeting ourneeds by shortchanging tomorrow’s; defense requirements will be a lessenedwithdrawing from constabulary missions to capacity for American global leadership and,retain strength for large-scale wars; ultimately, the loss of a global security order“choosing” between presence in Europe or that is uniquely friendly to Americanpresence in Asia; and so on. These are bad principles and prosperity. v
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century I WHY ANOTHER DEFENSE REVIEW? Since the end of the Cold War, the Paradoxically, as American power andUnited States has struggled to formulate a influence are at their apogee, Americancoherent national security or military military forces limp toward exhaustion,strategy, one that accounts for the constants unable to meet the demands of their manyof American power and principles yet and varied missions, including preparing foraccommodates 21st century realities. Absent tomorrow’s battlefield. Today’s force,a strategic framework, U.S. defense plan- reduced by a third or more over the pastning has been an empty and increasingly decade, suffers from degraded combatself-referential exercise, often dominated by readiness; from difficulties in recruiting andbureaucratic and budgetary rather than retaining sufficient numbers of soldiers,strategic interests. Indeed, the proliferation sailors, airmen and Marines; from the effectsof defense reviews over the past decade of an extended “procurement holiday” thattestifies to the failure to chart a consistent has resulted in the premature aging of mostcourse: to date, there have been half a dozen weapons systems; from an increasinglyformal defense reviews, and the Pentagon is obsolescent and inadequate militarynow gearing up for a second Quadrennial infrastructure; from a shrinking industrialDefense Review in 2001. Unless this “QDR base poorly structured to be the “arsenal ofII” matches U.S. military forces and democracy” for the 21st century; from a lackresources to a viable American strategy, it, of innovation that threatens the techno-too, will fail. logical and operational advantages enjoyed by U.S. forces for a generation and upon These failures are not without cost: which American strategy depends. Finally,already, they place at risk an historic and most dangerously, the social fabric ofopportunity. After the victories of the past the military is frayed and worn. U.S. armedcentury – two world wars, the Cold War and forces suffer from a degraded quality of lifemost recently the Gulf War – the United divorced from middle-class expectations,States finds itself as the uniquely powerful upon which an all-volunteer force depends.leader of a coalition of free and prosperous Enlisted men and women and junior officersstates that faces no immediate great-power increasingly lack confidence in their seniorchallenge. leaders, whom they believe will not tell unpleasant truths to their civilian leaders. In The American peace has proven itself sum, as the American peace reaches acrosspeaceful, stable and durable. It has, over the the globe, the force that preserves that peacepast decade, provided the geopolitical is increasingly overwhelmed by its tasks.framework for widespread economic growthand the spread of American principles of This is no paradox; it is the inevitableliberty and democracy. Yet no moment in consequence of the failure to match militaryinternational politics can be frozen in time; means to geopolitical ends. Underlying theeven a global Pax Americana will not failed strategic and defense reviews of thepreserve itself. past decade is the idea that the collapse of 1
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurythe Soviet Union had created a “strategic Cold War 21st Centurypause.” In other words, until another great- Security Bipolar Unipolarpower challenger emerges, the United States systemcan enjoy a respite from the demands ofinternational leadership. Like a boxer Strategic Contain Preserve Paxbetween championship bouts, America can goal Soviet Americanaafford to relax and live the good life, certain Unionthat there would be enough time to shape upfor the next big challenge. Thus the United Main Deter Soviet Secure andStates could afford to reduce its military military expansionism expand zonesforces, close bases overseas, halt major mission(s) of democraticweapons programs and reap the financial peace; deterbenefits of the “peace dividend.” But as we rise of newhave seen over the past decade, there has great-powerbeen no shortage of powers around the competitor;world who have taken the collapse of the defend keySoviet empire as an opportunity to expand regions;their own influence and challenge the exploitAmerican-led security order. transformation of war Beyond the faulty notion of a strategicpause, recent defense reviews have suffered Main Potential Potentialfrom an inverted understanding of the mili- military global war theater warstary dimension of the Cold War struggle threat(s) across many spread acrossbetween the United States and the Soviet theaters globeUnion. American containment strategy didnot proceed from the assumption that theCold War would be a purely military strug- Focus of Europe East Asia The multiple challenges of the strategicgle, in which the U.S. Army matched theRed Army tank for tank; rather, the United competition War world. post-ColdStates would seek to deter the Sovietsmilitarily while defeating them economi-cally and ideologically over time. And, Over the decade of the post-Cold-Wareven within the realm of military affairs, the period, however, almost everything haspractice of deterrence allowed for what in changed. The Cold War world was a bipolarmilitary terms is called “an economy of world; the 21st century world is – for theforce.” The principle job of NATO forces, moment, at least – decidedly unipolar, withfor example, was to deter an invasion of America as the world’s “sole superpower.”Western Europe, not to invade and occupy America’s strategic goal used to bethe Russian heartland. Moreover, the bi- containment of the Soviet Union; today thepolar nuclear balance of terror made both task is to preserve an international securitythe United States and the Soviet Union environment conducive to Americangenerally cautious. Behind the smallest interests and ideals. The military’s jobproxy war in the most remote region lurked during the Cold War was to deter Sovietthe possibility of Armageddon. Thus, expansionism. Today its task is to securedespite numerous miscalculations through and expand the “zones of democraticthe five decades of Cold War, the United peace;” to deter the rise of a new great-States reaped an extraordinary measure of power competitor; defend key regions ofglobal security and stability simply by Europe, East Asia and the Middle East; andbuilding a credible and, in relative terms, to preserve American preeminence throughinexpensive nuclear arsenal. the coming transformation of war made 2
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurypossible by new technologies. From 1945 to reduced military force that has emerged1990, U.S. forces prepared themselves for a from the defense “drawdown” of the pastsingle, global war that might be fought decade. Today, America spends less than 3across many theaters; in the new century, the percent of its gross domestic product onprospect is for a variety of theater wars national defense, less than at any time sincearound the world, against separate and before World War II – in other words, sincedistinct adversaries pursuing separate and before the United States established itself asdistinct goals. During the Cold War, the the world’s leading power – and a cut frommain venue of superpower rivalry, the 4.7 percent of GDP in 1992, the first realstrategic “center of gravity,” was in Europe, post-Cold-War defense budget. Most of thiswhere large U.S. and NATO conventional reduction has come under the Clintonforces prepared to repulse a Soviet attack Administration; despite initial promises toand over which nuclear war might begin; approximate the level of defense spendingand with Europe now generally at peace, the called for in the final Bush Administrationnew strategic center of concern appears to program, President Clinton cut more thanbe shifting to East Asia. The missions for $160 billion from the Bush program from America’s armed 1992 to 1996 alone. Over the first seven Today, America forces have not years of the Clinton Administration, spends less than diminished so approximately $426 billion in defense much as shifted. investments have been deferred, creating a 3 percent of its The threats may weapons procurement “bow wave” of gross domestic not be as great, immense proportions. product on but there are national defense, more of them. The most immediate effect of reduced During the Cold defense spending has been a precipitate less than at any War, America decline in combat readiness. Across all time since before acquired its services, units are reporting degraded the United States security readiness, spare parts and personnel “wholesale” by shortages, postponed and simplified training established itself global deterrence regimens, and many other problems. In as the world’s of the Soviet congressional testimony, service chiefs of leading power. Union. Today, staff now routinely report that their forces that same are inadequate to the demands of the “two-security can only be acquired at the “retail” war” national military strategy. Presslevel, by deterring or, when needed, by attention focused on these readinesscompelling regional foes to act in ways that problems when it was revealed that twoprotect American interests and principles. Army divisions were given a “C-4” rating, meaning they were not ready for war. Yet it This gap between a diverse and was perhaps more telling that none of theexpansive set of new strategic realities and Army’s ten divisions achieved the highestdiminishing defense forces and resources “C-1” rating, reflecting the widespreaddoes much to explain why the Joint Chiefs effects of slipping readiness standards. Byof Staff routinely declare that they see “high contrast, every division that deployed torisk” in executing the missions assigned to Operation Desert Storm in 1990 and 1991U.S. armed forces under the government’s received a “C-1” rating. This is just adeclared national military strategy. Indeed, snapshot that captures the state of U.S.a JCS assessment conducted at the height of armed forces today.the Kosovo air war found the risk level“unacceptable.” Such risks are the result of These readiness problems arethe combination of the new missions exacerbated by the fact that U.S. forces aredescribed above and the dramatically poorly positioned to respond to today’s 3
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurycrises. In Europe, for example, the admit that rapid technological changesoverwhelming majority of Army and Air makes it uncertain which new weaponsForce units remain at their Cold War bases systems to develop, the armed services clingin Germany or England, while the security ever more tightly to traditional program andproblems on the continent have moved to concepts. As Andrew Krepinevich, aSoutheast Europe. Temporary rotations of member of the National Defense Panel, putforces to the Balkans and elsewhere in it in a recent study of Pentagon experi-Southeast Europe increase the overall mentation, “Unfortunately, the Defenseburdens of these operations many times. Department’s rhetoric asserting the need forLikewise, the Clinton Administration has military transformation and its support forcontinued the fiction that the operations of joint experimentation has yet to be matchedAmerican forces in the Persian Gulf are by any great sense of urgency or anymerely temporary duties. Nearly a decade substantial resource support.…At presentafter the Gulf War, U.S. air, ground and the Department’s effort is poorly focusednaval forces continue to protect enduring and woefully underfunded.”American interests in the region. In additionto rotational naval forces, the Army In sum, the 1990s have been a “decademaintains what amounts to an armored of defense neglect.” This leaves the nextbrigade in Kuwait for nine months of every president of the United States with anyear; the Air Force has two composite air enormous challenge: he must increasewings in constant “no-fly zone” operations military spending to preserve Americanover northern and southern Iraq. And geopolitical leadership, or he must pull backdespite increasing worries about the rise of from the security commitments that are theChina and instability in Southeast Asia, U.S. measure of America’s position as theforces are found almost exclusively in world’s sole superpower and the finalNortheast Asian bases. guarantee of security, democratic freedoms and individual political rights. This choice Yet for all its problems in carrying out will be among the first to confront thetoday’s missions, the Pentagon has done president: new legislation requires thealmost nothing to prepare for a future that incoming administration to fashion apromises to be very different and potentially national security strategy within six monthsmuch more dangerous. It is now commonly of assuming office, as opposed to waiting aunderstood that information and other new full year, and to complete anothertechnologies – as well as widespread quadrennial defense review three monthstechnological and weapons proliferation – after that. In a larger sense, the neware creating a dynamic that may threaten president will choose whether today’sAmerica’s ability to exercise its dominant “unipolar moment,” to use columnistmilitary power. Potential rivals such as Charles Krauthammer’s phrase forChina are anxious to exploit these trans- America’s current geopolitical preeminence,formational technologies broadly, while will be extended along with the peace andadversaries like Iran, Iraq and North Korea prosperity that it provides.are rushing to develop ballistic missiles andnuclear weapons as a deterrent to American This study seeks to frame these choicesintervention in regions they seek to clearly, and to re-establish the links betweendominate. Yet the Defense Department and U.S. foreign policy, security strategy, forcethe services have done little more than affix planning and defense spending. If ana “transformation” label to programs American peace is to be maintained, anddeveloped during the Cold War, while expanded, it must have a secure foundationdiverting effort and attention to a process of on unquestioned U.S. military preeminence.joint experimentation which restricts ratherthan encourages innovation. Rather than 4
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century II FOUR ESSENTIAL MISSIONS America’s global leadership, and its role has invited challenges; states seeking toas the guarantor of the current great-power establish regional hegemony continue topeace, relies upon the safety of the probe for the limits of the American securityAmerican homeland; the preservation of a perimeter. None of the defense reviews offavorable balance of power in Europe, the the past decade has weighed fully the rangeMiddle East and surrounding energy- of missions demanded by U.S. globalproducing region, and East Asia; and the leadership: defending the homeland,general stability of the international system fighting andof nation-states relative to terrorists, None of the winning multipleorganized crime, and other “non-state defense reviews large-scale wars,actors.” The relative importance of these of the past conductingelements, and the threats to U.S. interests, constabularymay rise and fall over time. Europe, for decade has missions whichexample, is now extraordinarily peaceful weighed fully preserve theand stable, despite the turmoil in the the range of current peace, andBalkans. Conversely, East Asia appears to transforming thebe entering a period with increased potential missions U.S. armed forcesfor instability and competition. In the Gulf, demanded by to exploit theAmerican power and presence has achieved U.S. global “revolution inrelative external security for U.S. allies, but leadership, nor military affairs.”the longer-term prospects are murkier. Nor have theyGenerally, American strategy for the coming adequately adequatelydecades should seek to consolidate the great quantified the quantified thevictories won in the 20th century – which forces and forces andhave made Germany and Japan into stable resources resourcesdemocracies, for example – maintain necessary tostability in the Middle East, while setting the necessary to execute theseconditions for 21st-century successes, execute these missionsespecially in East Asia. missions separately and successfully. A retreat from any one of these successfully. While muchrequirements would call America’s status as further detailedthe world’s leading power into question. As analysis would be required, it is the purposewe have seen, even a small failure like that of this study to outline the large, “full-in Somalia or a halting and incomplete spectrum” forces that are necessary totriumph as in the Balkans can cast doubt on conduct the varied tasks demanded by aAmerican credibility. The failure to define a strategy of American preeminence for todaycoherent global security and military and tomorrow.strategy during the post-Cold-War period 5
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New CenturyHOMELAND DEFENSE. America must defend its homeland. During the Cold War,nuclear deterrence was the key element in homeland defense; it remains essential. But thenew century has brought with it new challenges. While reconfiguring its nuclear force, theUnited States also must counteract the effects of the proliferation of ballistic missiles andweapons of mass destruction that may soon allow lesser states to deter U.S. military actionby threatening U.S. allies and the American homeland itself. Of all the new and currentmissions for U.S. armed forces, this must have priority.LARGE WARS. Second, the United States must retain sufficient forces able to rapidlydeploy and win multiple simultaneous large-scale wars and also to be able to respond tounanticipated contingencies in regions where it does not maintain forward-based forces.This resembles the “two-war” standard that has been the basis of U.S. force planning overthe past decade. Yet this standard needs to be updated to account for new realities andpotential new conflicts.CONSTABULARY DUTIES. Third, the Pentagon must retain forces to preserve thecurrent peace in ways that fall short of conduction major theater campaigns. A decade’sexperience and the policies of two administrations have shown that such forces must beexpanded to meet the needs of the new, long-term NATO mission in the Balkans, thecontinuing no-fly-zone and other missions in Southwest Asia, and other presence missions invital regions of East Asia. These duties are today’s most frequent missions, requiring forcesconfigured for combat but capable of long-term, independent constabulary operations.TRANSFORM U.S. ARMED FORCES. Finally, the Pentagon must begin now to exploit the so-called “revolution in military affairs,” sparked by the introduction of advanced technologiesinto military systems; this must be regarded as a separate and critical mission worthy of ashare of force structure and defense budgets. Current American armed forces are ill- requirement for peacekeeping operations;prepared to execute these four missions. unless this requirement is better understood,Over the past decade, efforts to design and America’s ability to fight major wars will bebuild effective missile defenses have been jeopardized. Likewise, the transformationill-conceived and underfunded, and the process has gotten short shrift.Clinton Administration has proposed deepreductions in U.S. nuclear forces without To meet the requirements of the foursufficient analysis of the changing global new missions highlighted above, the Unitednuclear balance of forces. While, broadly States must undertake a two-stage process.speaking, the United States now maintains The immediate task is to rebuild today’ssufficient active and reserve forces to meet force, ensuring that it is equal to the tasksthe traditional two-war standard, this is true before it: shaping the peacetime enviro-only in the abstract, under the most nment and winning multiple, simultaneousfavorable geopolitical conditions. As the theater wars; these forces must be largeJoint Chiefs of Staff have admitted enough to accomplish these tasks withoutrepeatedly in congressional testimony, they running the “high” or “unacceptable” risks itlack the forces necessary to meet the two- faces now. The second task is to seriouslywar benchmark as expressed in the warplans embark upon a transformation of theof the regional commanders-in-chief. The Defense Department. This itself will be arequirements for major-war forces must be two-stage effort: for the next decade orreevaluated to accommodate new strategic more, the armed forces will continue torealities. One of these new realities is the operate many of the same systems it now 6
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurydoes, organize themselves in traditional more effective nuclear weapons; broughtunits, and employ current operational underground testing to a complete halt; andconcepts. However, this transition period allowed the Department of Energy’smust be a first step toward more substantial weapons complex and associated scientificreform. Over the next several decades, the expertise to atrophy for lack of support. TheUnited States must field a global system of administration has also made the decision tomissile defenses, divine ways to control the retain current weapons in the active force fornew “international commons” of space and years beyond their design life. Whencyberspace, and build new kinds of combined with the decision to cut back onconventional forces for different strategic regular, non-nuclear flight and system testschallenges and a new technological of the weapons themselves, this raises a hostenvironment. of questions about the continuing safety and reliability of the nation’s strategic arsenal.Nuclear Forces The administration’s stewardship of the nations deterrent capability has been aptly Current conventional wisdom about described by Congress as “erosion bystrategic forces in the post-Cold-War world design.”is captured in a comment made by the lateLes Aspin, the Clinton Administrations firstsecretary of defense. Aspin wrote that thecollapse of the Soviet Union had “literallyreversed U.S. interests in nuclear weapons”and, “Today, if offered the magic wand toeradicate the existence and knowledge ofnuclear weapons, we would very likelyaccept it.” Since the United States is theworld’s dominant conventional military A new assessment of the globalpower, this sentiment is understandable. But nuclear balance, one that takesit is precisely because we have such power account of Chinese and other nuclearthat smaller adversarial states, looking for anequalizing advantage, are determined to forces as well as Russian, mustacquire their own weapons of mass precede decisions about U.S. nucleardestruction. Whatever our fondest wishes, force cuts.the reality of the today’s world is that thereis no magic wand with which to eliminate Rather than maintain and improvethese weapons (or, more fundamentally, the America’s nuclear deterrent, the Clintoninterest in acquiring them) and that deterring Administration has put its faith in new armstheir use requires a reliable and dominant control measures, most notably by signingU.S. nuclear capability. the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT). The treaty proposed a new While the formal U.S. nuclear posture multilateral regime, consisting of some 150has remained conservative through the 1994 states, whose principal effect would be toNuclear Posture Review and the 1997 constrain Americas unique role in providingQuadrennial Defense Review, and senior the global nuclear umbrella that helps toPentagon leaders speak of the continuing keep states like Japan and South Korea fromneed for nuclear deterrent forces, the Clinton developing the weapons that are well withinAdministration has taken repeated steps to their scientific capability, while doing littleundermine the readiness and effectiveness of to stem nuclear weapons proliferation.U.S. nuclear forces. In particular, it has Although the Senate refused to ratify thevirtually ceased development of safer and treaty, the administration continues to abide by its basic strictures. And while it may 7
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurymake sense to continue the current needed first is a global net assessment ofmoratorium on nuclear testing for the what kinds and numbers of nuclear weaponsmoment – since it would take a number of the U.S. needs to meet its securityyears to refurbish the neglected testing responsibilities in a post-Soviet world.infrastructure in any case – ultimately this isan untenable situation. If the United States In short, until the Department ofis to have a nuclear deterrent that is both Defense can better define future its nucleareffective and safe, it will need to test. requirements, significant reductions in U.S. nuclear forces might well have unforeseen That said, of all the elements of U.S. consequences that lessen rather thanmilitary force posture, perhaps none is more enhance the security of the United Statesin need of reevaluation than America’s and its allies. Reductions, upon review,nuclear weapons. Nuclear weapons remain might be called for. But what should finallya critical component of American military drive the size and character of our nuclearpower but it is unclear whether the current forces is not numerical parity with RussianU.S. nuclear arsenal is well-suited to the capabilities but maintaining Americanemerging post-Cold War world. Today’s strategic superiority – and, with thatstrategic calculus encompasses more factors superiority, a capability to deter possiblethan just the balance of terror between the hostile coalitions of nuclear powers. U.S.United States and Russia. U.S. nuclear force nuclear superiority is nothing to be ashamedplanning and related arms control policies of; rather, it will be an essential element inmust take account of a larger set of variables preserving American leadership in a morethan in the past, including the growing complex and chaotic world.number of smallnuclear arsenals – The Forces for Major Theater Warsfrom North Koreato Pakistan to, administration’s The one constant of Pentagon forceperhaps soon, stewardship of planning through the past decade has beenIran and Iraq – the nation’s the recognized need to retain sufficientand a modernized deterrent combat forces to fight and win, as rapidlyand expanded and decisively as possible, multiple, nearlyChinese nuclear capability has simultaneous major theater wars. Thisforce. Moreover, been described constant is based upon two important truthsthere is a question by Congress as about the current international order. One,about the role “erosion by the Cold-War standoff between America andnuclear weapons its allies and the Soviet Union that made forshould play in design.” caution and discouraged direct aggressiondeterring the use against the major security interests of eitherof other kinds of weapons of mass destruc- side no longer exists. Two, conventionaltion, such as chemical and biological, with warfare remains a viable way for aggressivethe U.S. having foresworn those weapons’ states to seek major changes in thedevelopment and use. It addition, there may international order.be a need to develop a new family of nuclearweapons designed to address new sets of Iraq’s 1990 invasion of Kuwait reflectedmilitary requirements, such as would be both truths. The invasion would have beenrequired in targeting the very deep under- highly unlikely, if not impossible, within theground, hardened bunkers that are being context of the Cold War, and Iraq overranbuilt by many of our potential adversaries. Kuwait in a matter of hours. These twoNor has there been a serious analysis done truths revealed a third: maintaining orof the benefits versus the costs of maintain- restoring a favorable order in vital regions ining the traditional nuclear “triad.” What is 8
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurythe world such as Europe, the Middle East in the early 1990s. The experience ofand East Asia places a unique responsibility Operation Allied Force in the Balkanson U.S. armed forces. The Gulf War and suggests that, if anything, the canonical two-indeed the subsequent lesser wars in the war force-sizing standard is more likely toBalkans could hardly have been fought and be too low than too high. The Kosovo airwon without the dominant role played by campaign eventually involved the level ofAmerican military might. forces anticipated for a major war, but in a theater other than the two – the Korean Thus, the understanding that U.S. armed peninsula and Southwest Asia – that haveforces should be shaped by a “two-major- generated past Pentagon planning scenarios.war” standard rightly has been accepted as Moreover, new theater wars that can bethe core of America’s superpower status foreseen, such as an American defense ofsince the end of the Cold War. The logic of Taiwan against a Chinese invasion orpast defense reviews still obtains, and punitive attack, have yet to be formallyreceived its clear exposition in the 1997 considered by Pentagon planners.Quadrennial Defense Review, which argued: To better judge forces needed for A force sized and equipped for building an American peace, the Pentagon deterring and defeating aggression in needs to begin to calculate the force more than one theater ensures that the necessary to United States will maintain the protect, The Joint Chiefs flexibility to cope with the unpredictable and unexpected. Such a capability is independently, have admitted the sine qua non of a superpower and is U.S. interests they lack the essential to the credibility of our overall in Europe, East Asia and the forces necessary national security strategy….If the United States were to forego its ability Gulf at all to meet the two- to defeat aggression in more than one times. The war benchmark. theater at a time, our standing as a actions of our global power, as the security partner of adversaries in these regions bear no more choice and the leader of the than a tangential relationship to one another; international community would be it is more likely that one of these regional called in to question. Indeed, some powers will seize an opening created by allies would undoubtedly read a one- war capability as a signal that the deployments of U.S. forces elsewhere to United States, if heavily engaged make mischief. elsewhere, would no longer be able to defend their interests…A one-theater- Thus, the major-theater-war standard war capacity would risk should remain the principal force-sizing tool undermining…the credibility of U.S. for U.S. conventional forces. This not to say security commitments in key regions of that this measure has been perfectly applied the world. This, in turn, could cause in the past: Pentagon analyses have been allies and friends to adopt more both too optimistic and too pessimistic, by divergent defense policies and postures, turns. For example, the analyses done of the thereby weakening the web of alliances and coalitions on which we rely to requirement to defeat an Iraqi invasion of protect our interests abroad. Kuwait and Saudi Arabia almost certainly overestimates the level of force required. In short, anything less than a clear two- Conversely, past analyses of a defense ofwar capacity threatens to devolve into a no- South Korea may have underestimated thewar strategy. difficulties of such a war, especially if North Korea employed weapons of mass destruc- Unfortunately, Defense Department tion, as intelligence estimates anticipate.thinking about this requirement was frozen Moreover, the theater-war analysis done for 9
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurythe QDR assumed that Kim Jong Il and unavoidable diet for U.S. armed forces forSaddam Hussein each could begin a war – many years to come: “Based on recentperhaps even while employing chemical, experience and intelligence projections, thebiological or even nuclear weapons – and demand for SSC operations is expected tothe United States would make no effort to remain high over the next 15 to 20 years,”unseat militarily either ruler. In both cases, the review concluded. Yet, at the samepast Pentagon wargames have given little or time, the QDR failed to allocate any forcesno consideration to the force requirements to these missions, continuing the fiction that,necessary not only to defeat an attack but to for force planning purposes, constabularyremove these regimes from power and missions could be considered “lesserconduct post-combat stability operations. In included cases” of major theater warshort, past Defense Department application requirements. “U.S. forces must also beof the two-war standard is not a reliable able to withdraw from SSC operations,guide to the real force requirements – and, reconstitute, and then deploy to a majorof course, past reviews included no analysis theater war in accordance with requiredof the kind of campaign in Europe as was timelines,” the review argued.seen in Operation Allied Force. Becausepast Pentagon strategy reviews have beenbudget-driven exercises, it will be necessaryto conduct fresh and more realistic analyseseven of the canonical two-war scenarios. In sum, while retaining the spirit of pastforce-planning for major wars, theDepartment of Defense must undertake amore nuanced and thoroughgoing review ofreal requirements. The truths that gave riseto the original two-war standard endure:America’s adversaries will continue to resistthe building of the American peace; whenthey see an opportunity as Saddam Hussein The increasing number ofdid in 1990, they will employ their most ‘constabulary’ missions for U.S.powerful armed forces to win on the battle- troops, such as in Kosovo above, mustfield what they could not win in peaceful be considered an integral element incompetition; and American armed forces Pentagon force planning.will remain the core of efforts to deter,defeat, or remove from power regionalaggressors. The shortcomings of this approach were underscored by the experience of OperationForces for ‘Constabulary’ Duties Allied Force in the Balkans. Precisely because the forces engaged there would not In addition to improving the analysis have been able to withdraw, reconstitute andneeded to quantify the requirements for redeploy to another operation – and becausemajor theater wars, the Pentagon also must the operation consumed such a large part ofcome to grips with the real requirements for overall Air Force aircraft – the Joint Chiefsconstabulary missions. The 1997 of Staff concluded that the United StatesQuadrennial Defense Review rightly was running “unacceptable” risk in the eventacknowledged that these missions, which it of war elsewhere. Thus, facing up to thedubbed “smaller-scale contingencies,” or realities of multiple constabulary missionsSSCs, would be the frequent and will require a permanent allocation of U.S. armed forces. 10
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century Nor can the problem be solved by era, the Defense Department is more thansimply withdrawing from current able to conduct a useful assessment toconstabulary missions or by vowing to avoid quantify the overall needs for forcesthem in the future. Indeed, withdrawing engaged in constabulary duties. While partfrom today’s ongoing missions would be of the solution lies in repositioning existingproblematic. Although the no-fly-zone air forces, there is no escaping the conclusionoperations over northern and southern Iraq that these new missions, unforeseen whenhave continued without pause for almost a the defense drawdown began a decade ago,decade, they remain an essential element in require an increase in overall personnelU.S. strategy and force posture in the strength and U.S. force structure.Persian Gulf region. Ending these opera-tions would hand Saddam Hussein an impor- Transformation Forcestant victory, something any American leaderwould be loath to do. Likewise, withdraw- The fourth element in American forceing from the Balkans would place American posture – and certainly the one which holdsleadership in Europe – indeed, the viability the key to any longer-term hopes to extendof NATO – in question. While none of the current Pax Americana – is the missionthese operations involves a mortal threat, to transform U.S. military forces to meetthey do engage U.S. national security new geopolitical and technologicalinterests directly, as well as engaging challenges. While the prime directive forAmerican moral interests. transformation will be to design and deploy a global missile defense system, the effects Further, these constabulary missions are of information and other advanced techno-far more complex and likely to generate logies promise to revolutionize the nature ofviolence than traditional “peacekeeping” conventional armed forces. Moreover, themissions. For one, they demand American need to create weapons systems optimizedpolitical leadership rather than that of the for operations in the Pacific theater willUnited Nations, as the failure of the UN create requirements quite distinct from themission in the Balkans and the relative current generation of systems designed forsuccess of NATO operations there attests. warfare on the European continent and thoseNor can the United States assume a UN-like new systems like the F-22 fighter that alsostance of neutrality; the preponderance of were developed to meet late-Cold-WarAmerican power is so great and its global needs.interests so wide that it cannot pretend to beindifferent to the political outcome in the Although the basic concept for a systemBalkans, the Persian Gulf or even when it of global missile defenses capable ofdeploys forces in Africa. Finally, these defending the United States and its alliesmissions demand forces basically configured against the threat of smaller and simplerfor combat. While they also demand ballistic missiles has been well understoodpersonnel with special language, logistics since the late 1980s, a decade has beenand other support skills, the first order of squandered in developing the requisitebusiness in missions such as in the Balkans technologies. In fact, work on the keyis to establish security, stability and order. elements of such a system, especially thoseAmerican troops, in particular, must be that would operate in space, has either beenregarded as part of an overwhelmingly so slowed or halted completely, so that thepowerful force. process of deploying robust missile defenses remains a long-term project. If for no other With a decade’s worth of experience reason, the mission to create such a missileboth of the requirements for current defense system should be considered aconstabulary missions and with the chaotic matter of military transformation.political environment of the post-Cold War 11
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century As will be argued more fully below, marks the new century places theseeffective ballistic missile defenses will be advantages at risk. Today’s U.S.the central element in the exercise of conventional forces are masters of a matureAmerican power and the projection of U.S. paradigm of warfare, marked by themilitary forces abroad. Without it, weak dominance of armored vehicles, aircraftstates operating small arsenals of crude carriers and, especially, manned tacticalballistic missiles, armed with basic nuclear aircraft, that is beginning to be overtaken bywarheads or other weapons of mass destruc- a new paradigm, marked by long-rangetion, will be a in a strong position to deter precision strikes and the proliferation ofthe United States from using conventional missile technologies. Ironically, it has beenforce, no matter the technological or other the United States that has pioneered this newadvantages we may enjoy. Even if such form of high-technology conventionalenemies are merely able to threaten warfare: it was suggested by the 1991 GulfAmerican allies rather than the United States War and has been revealed more fully by thehomeland itself, America’s ability to project operations of the past decade. Even thepower will be “Allied Force” air war for Kosovo showed adeeply distorted version of the emerging paradigmcompromised. For the United of warfare.Alas, neither States to retain theAdmini- technological and Yet even these pioneering capabilitiesstration tactical advan- are the residue of investments first made instrategists nor the mid- and late 1980s; over the pastPentagon tages it now decade the pace of innovation within theforce planners enjoys, the Pentagon has slowed measurably. In part,seem to have transformation this is due to reduced defense budgets, thegrasped this effort must be overwhelming dominance of U.S. forceselemental today, and the multiplicity of constabularypoint; considered as missions. And without the driving challengecertainly, pressing a military of the Soviet military threat, efforts atefforts to fund, mission as innovation have lacked urgency.design and Nonetheless, a variety of new potentialdevelop an preparing for challenges can be clearly foreseen. Theeffective today’s theater Chinese military, in particular, seeks tosystem of wars. exploit the revolution in military affairs tomissile offset American advantages in naval and airdefenses do not reflect any sense of urgency. power, for example. If the United States isNonetheless, the first task in transforming to retain the technological and tacticalU.S. military to meet the technological and advantages it now enjoys in large-scalestrategic realities of a new century is to conventional conflicts, the effort atcreate such a system. transformation must be considered as pressing a mission as preparing for today’s Creating a system of global missile potential theater wars or constabularydefenses is but the first task of missions – indeed, it must receive atransformation; the need to reshape U.S. significant, separate allocation of forces andconventional forces is almost as pressing. budgetary resources over the next twoFor, although American armed forces decades.possess capabilities and enjoy advantagesthat far surpass those of even our richest and In addition, the process of transfor-closest allies, let alone our declared and mation must proceed from an appreciationpotential enemies, the combination of of American strategy and political goals.technological and strategic change that For example, as the leader of a global 12
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurynetwork of alliances and strategic general terms, it seems likely that thepartnerships, U.S. armed forces cannot process of transformation will take severalretreat into a “Fortress America.” Thus, decades and that U.S. forces will continue towhile long-range precision strikes will operate many, if not most, of today’scertainly play an increasingly large role in weapons systems for a decade or more.U.S. military operations, American forces Thus, it can be foreseen that the process ofmust remain deployed abroad, in large transformation will in fact be a two-stagenumbers. To remain as the leader of a process: first of transition, then of morevariety of coalitions, the United States must thoroughgoing transformation. The break-partake in the risks its allies face; security point will come when a preponderance ofguarantees that depend solely upon power new weapons systems begins to enterprojected from the continental United States service, perhaps when, for example,will inevitably become discounted. unmanned aerial vehicles begin to be as numerous as manned aircraft. In this regard, Moreover, the process of transformation the Pentagon should be very wary of makingshould proceed in a spirit of competition large investments in new programs – tanks,among the services and between service and planes, aircraft carriers, for example – thatjoint approaches. Inevitably, new would commit U.S. forces to currenttechnologies may create the need for entirely paradigms of warfare for many decades tonew military organizations; this report will come.argue below that the emergence of space asa key theater of war suggests forcefully that, In conclusion, it should be clear thatin time, it may be wise to create a separate these four essential missions for maintaining“space service.” Thus far, the Defense American military preeminence are quiteDepartment has attempted to take a separate and distinct from one another –prematurely joint approach to none should be considered a “lesser includedtransformation. While it is certain that new case” of another, even though they aretechnologies will allow for the closer closely related and may, in some cases,combination of traditional service require similar sorts of forces. Conversely,capabilities, it is too early in the process of the failure to provide sufficient forces totransformation to choke off what should be execute these four missions must result inthe healthy and competitive face of problems for American strategy. The failure“interservice rivalry.” Because the separate to build missile defenses will put Americaservices are the military institutions most and her allies at grave risk and compromiseattuned to providing forces designed to carry the exercise of American power abroad.out the specific missions required by U.S. Conventional forces that are insufficient tostrategy, they are in fact best equipped to fight multiple theater wars simultaneouslybecome the engines of transformation and cannot protect American global interests andchange within the context of enduring allies. Neglect or withdrawal frommission requirements. constabulary missions will increase the likelihood of larger wars breaking out and Finally, it must be remembered that the encourage petty tyrants to defy Americanprocess of transformation is indeed a interests and ideals. And the failure toprocess: even the most vivid view of the prepare for tomorrow’s challenges willarmed forces of the future must be grounded ensure that the current Pax Americanain an understanding of today’s forces. In comes to an early end.. 13
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century III REPOSITIONING TODAY’S FORCE Despite the centrality of major theater is on the road to becoming a NATOwars in conventional-force planning, it has protectorate. In the Persian Gulf region, thebecome painfully obvious that U.S. forces presence of American forces, along withhave other vital roles to play in building an British and French units, has become a semi-enduring American peace. The presence of permanent fact of life. Though theAmerican forces in critical regions around immediate mission of those forces is tothe world is the visible expression of the enforce the no-fly zones over northern andextent of America’s status as a superpower southern Iraq, they represent the long-termand as the guarantor of liberty, peace and commitment of the United States and itsstability. Our role in shaping the peacetime major allies to a region of vital importance.security environment is an essential one, not Indeed, the Unitedto be renounced without great cost: it will be States has fordifficult, if not impossible, to sustain the decades sought to Guarding therole of global guarantor without a substantial play a more Americanoverseas presence. Our allies, for whom permanent role in security peri-regional problems are vital security interests, Gulf regional meter today –will come to doubt our willingness to defend security. Whiletheir interests if U.S. forces withdraw into a the unresolved and tomorrow –Fortress America. Equally important, our conflict with Iraq will requireworldwide web of alliances provides the provides the changes in U.S.most effective and efficient means for immediate deployments andexercising American global leadership; the justification, thebenefits far outweigh the burdens. Whether need for a installationsestablished in permanent bases or on substantial overseas.rotational deployments, the operations of American forceU.S. and allied forces abroad provide the presence in the Gulf transcends the issue offirst line of defense of what may be the regime of Saddam Hussein. In Eastdescribed as the “American security Asia, the pattern of U.S. military operationsperimeter.” is shifting to the south: in recent years, significant naval forces have been sent to the Since the collapse of the Soviet empire, region around Taiwan in response tothis perimeter has expanded slowly but Chinese provocation, and now a contingentinexorably. In Europe, NATO has of U.S. troops is supporting the Australian-expanded, admitting three new members and led mission to East Timor. Across theacquiring a larger number of “adjunct” globe, the trend is for a larger U.S. securitymembers through the Partnership for Peace perimeter, bringing with it new kinds ofprogram. Tens of thousands of U.S, NATO missions.and allied troops are on patrol in theBalkans, and have fought a number of The placement of U.S. bases has yet tosignificant actions there; in effect, the region reflect these realities – if anything, the 14
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centuryworldwide archipelago of U.S. military the true American commitment to our alliesinstallations has contracted as the perimeter and their security interests – but they alsoof U.S. security interests has expanded. need to be highly versatile and mobile with aAmerican armed forces far from ideally broad range of capabilities; they are thepositioned to respond to the needs of the cavalry on the new American frontier. Intimes, but the Pentagon remains tied to the event of a large-scale war, they must belevels of forward-deployed forces that bear able to shape the battlefield whilelittle relationship to military capabilities or reinforcing forces based primarily in therealities. The air war in Kosovo provides a United States arrive to apply decisive blowsvivid example: during Operation Allied to the enemy. Not only must they beForce, U.S. and NATO warplanes were repositioned to reflect the shifting strategicspread out across the continent of Europe landscape, they also must be reorganizedand even into Asiatic Turkey, forced into a and restructured to reflect their newwidely dispersed and very complex pattern missions and to integrate new technologies.of operations – requiring extensive refuelingefforts and limiting the campaign itself – by Europea lack of adequate air bases in southeasternEurope. The network of American overseas At the end of the Cold War, the Unitedinstallations and deployments requires States maintained more than 300,000 troopsreconfiguration. Likewise, the structure of in Europe, including two Army corps and 13U.S. forces needs to be reconsidered in light Air Force wings plus a variety of indepen-of the changing mission of the American dent sub-units, primarily based in Germany.military. Overall U.S. military force The central plain of Germany was thestructure must be rationalized to accommo- central theater of the Cold War and, short ofdate the fact that the presence of these forces an all-out nuclear exchange, a Sovietin far-flung outposts or on patrol overseas armored invasion of western Europe themay be as important as their theater- principal threat faced by the United Stateswarfighting missions, especially in Europe. and its NATO allies. Today Germany isThe requirements of Balkans stabilization, unified, Poland and the Czech RepublicNATO expansion (including Partnership for members of NATO, and the Russian armyPeace) and other missions within the theater has retreated to the gates of Moscow whilerender it unrealistic to expect U.S. forces in becoming primarily engaged in theEurope to be readily available for other Caucasus and to the south more generally.crises, as formal Pentagon planning Though northern and central Europe arepresumes. The continuing challenges from arguably more stable now than at any timeIraq also make it unwise to draw down in history, the majority of American forcesforces in the Gulf dramatically. Securing in Europe are still based in the north,the American perimeter today – and including a theater army and a corps of twotomorrow – will necessitate shifts in U.S. heavy divisions in Germany and just fiveoverseas operations. Air Force wings, plus a handful of other, smaller units. American armed forces stationed abroadand on rotational deployments around the But while northern and central Europeworld should be considered as the first line have remained extraordinarily stable, andof American defenses, providing recon- the eastern Germany, Poland and the Czechnaissance and security against the prospect Republic have become reintegrated into theof larger crises and conducting stability mainstream of European political, economicoperations to prevent their outbreak. These and cultural life, the situation in south-forces need to be among the most ready, eastern Europe has been a tumultuous one.with finely honed warfighting skills – and The Balkans, and southeastern Europe moreonly forces configured for combat indicate 15
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurygenerally, present the major hurdle toward Despite the shifting focus of conflict inthe creation of a Europe “whole and free” Europe, a requirement to station U.S. forcesfrom the Baltic to the Black Sea. The delay in northern and central Europe remains. Thein bringing security and stability to south- region is stable, but a continued Americaneastern Europe has not only prevented the presence helps to assure the major Europeanconsolidation of the victory in the Cold War, powers, especially Germany, that the Unitedit has created a zone of violence and conflict States retains its longstanding securityand introduced uncertainty about America’s interest in the continent. This is especiallyrole in Europe. important in light of the nascent European moves toward an independent defense “identity” and policy; it is important that NATO not be replaced by the European Union, leaving the United States without a voice in European security affairs. In addition, many of the current installations and facilities provide critical infrastructure for supporting U.S. forces throughout Europe and for reinforcement in the event of a crisis. From airbases in England and Germany to headquarters and Army units in Belgium and Germany, much of the currentThe continuing deployment of forces in network of U.S. bases in northern and central retains its relevance today as in thethe Balkans reflects a U.S. commitment Cold War.to the region’s security. By refusing totreat these deployments as a shift of the However, changes should be made topermanent American presence in reflect the larger shift in European securityEurope, the Clinton Administration has needs. U.S. Army Europe should beincreased the burden on the armed transformed from a single corps of twoservices exponentially. heavy divisions and support units into versatile, combined-arms brigade-sized units At the same time, the continuing capable of independent action anddeployment of forces in the Balkans reflects movement over operational distances. U.S.what is in fact a long-term American Air Force units in Europe need to undergo acommitment to the security of the region. similar reorientation. The currentBut by refusing to treat these deployments infrastructure in England and Germanyas an expansion – or shift – of the permanent should be retained. The NATO air base atAmerican presence in Europe, reflecting an Aviano, Italy, long the primary location forenduring interest, the Clinton air operations over the Balkans, needs to beAdministration has increased the burden on substantially improved. As with groundthe armed services exponentially. Rather forces, serious consideration should be giventhan recognizing the need to reposition and to establishing a permanent and modernreconfigure U.S. forces in Europe away NATO and U.S. airfield in Hungary forfrom the north to the southeast, current support to central and southern Europe. Inpolicy has been to rotate units in and out of Turkey, Incirlik Air Base, home ofthe Balkans, destroying their readiness to Operation Northern Watch, also needs to beperform other missions and tying up an expanded, improved and perhapsincreasingly large slice of a significantly supplemented with a new base in easternreduced force. Turkey. 16
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century Although U.S. Navy and Marine forces pass from the scene. Over the long term,generally operate on a regular cycle of Iran may well prove as large a threat to U.S.deployments to European waters, they rely interests in the Gulf as Iraq has. And evenon a network of permanent bases in the should U.S.-Iranian relations improve,region, especially in the Mediterranean. retaining forward-based forces in the regionThese should be retained, and consideration would still be an essential element in U.S.given to establishing a more robust presence security strategy given the longstandingin the Black Sea. As NATO expands and American interests in the region.the pattern of U.S. military operations inEurope continues to shift to the south andeast, U.S. naval presence in the Black Sea issure to increase. However, as will bediscussed in detail below, this presenceshould be based less frequently on full-scalecarrier battle groups.Persian Gulf In the decade since the end of the ColdWar, the Persian Gulf and the surroundingregion has witnessed a geometric increase inthe presence of U.S. armed forces, peakingabove 500,000 troops during Operation Almost a decade after the end of theDesert Storm, but rarely falling below Gulf War, no-fly-zone operations20,000 in the intervening years. In Saudi continue over northern and southernArabia, Kuwait and other neighboring states Iraq.roughly 5,000 airmen and a large and variedfleet of Air Force aircraft patrol the skies of In addition to the aircraft enforcing theOperation Southern Watch, often comple- no-fly zone, the United States now alsomented by Navy aircraft from carriers in the retains what amounts to a near-permanentGulf and, during the strikes reacting to land force presence in Kuwait. A substantialSaddam Hussein’s periodic provocations, heavy task force with almost the strength ofcruise missiles from Navy surface vessels a brigade rotates four times a year onand submarines. Flights from Turkey under average for maneuvers and joint trainingNorthern Watch also involve substantial with the Kuwaiti army, with the result thatforces, and indeed more often result in commanders now believe that, incombat actions. conjunction with the Southern Watch fleet, Kuwait itself is strongly defended against After eight years of no-fly-zone any Iraqi attack. With a minor increase inoperations, there is little reason to anticipate strength, more permanent basingthat the U.S. air presence in the region arrangements, and continued no-fly and “no-should diminish significantly as long as drive” zone enforcement, the danger of aSaddam Hussein remains in power. repeat short-warning Iraqi invasion as inAlthough Saudi domestic sensibilities 1990 would be significantly reduced.demand that the forces based in theKingdom nominally remain rotational With the rationalization of ground-basedforces, it has become apparent that this is U.S. air forces in the region, the demand fornow a semi-permanent mission. From an carrier presence in the region can be relaxed.American perspective, the value of such As recent strikes against Iraq demonstrate,bases would endure even should Saddam the preferred weapon for punitive raids is 17
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurythe cruise missile, supplemented by stealthy of American forces in Korea serves a largerstrike aircraft and longer-range Air Force and longer-range strategic purpose. For thestrike aircraft. Carrier aircraft are most present, any reduction in capabilities of theuseful in sustaining a campaign begun with current U.S. garrison on the peninsula wouldmissiles and stealth strike aircraft, indicating be unwise. If anything, there is a need tothat a surface action group capable of bolster them, especially with respect to theirlaunching several hundred cruise missiles is ability to defend against missile attacks andthe most valuable naval presence in the to limit the effects of North Korea’s massiveGulf. With a substantial permanent Army artillery capability. In time, or withground presence in Kuwait, the demands for unification, the structure of these units willMarine presence in the Gulf could be scaled change and their manpower levels fluctuate,back as well. but U.S. presence in this corner of Asia should continue.East Asia A similar rationale argues in favor of retaining substantial forces in Japan. In Current U.S. force planning calls for the recent years, the stationing of large forces instationing of approximately 100,000 U.S. Okinawa has become increasingly contro-troops in Asia, but this level reflects versial in Japanese domestic politics, andPentagon inertia and the legacy of the Cold while efforts to accommodate local sensi-War more than serious thinking about bilities are warranted, it is essential to retaincurrent strategic requirements or defense the capabilities U.S. forces in Okinawaneeds. The prospect is that East Asia will represent. If the United States is to remainbecome an increasingly important region, the guarantor of security in Northeast Asia,marked by the rise of Chinese power, while and to hold together a de facto allianceU.S. forces may decline in number. whose other main pillars are Korea and Japan maintaining forward-based U.S. Conventional wisdom has it that the forces is essential.37,000-man U.S. garrison in South Korea ismerely there to protect against the possi- In Southeast Asia, American forces arebility of an invasion from the North. This too sparse to adequately address risingremains the garrison’s central mission, but security requirements. Since its withdrawalthese are now the only U.S. forces based from the Philippines in 1992, the Unitedpermanently on the Asian continent. They States has not had a significant permanentwill still have a vital role to play in U.S. military presence in Southeast Asia. Norsecurity strategy in the event of Korean can U.S. forces in Northeast Asia easilyunification and with the rise of Chinese operate in or rapidly deploy to Southeastmilitary power. While Korea unification Asia – and certainly not without placingmight call for the reduction in American their commitments in Korea at risk. Exceptpresence on the peninsula and a transfor- for routine patrols by naval and Marinemation of U.S force posture in Korea, the forces, the security of this strategicallychanges would really reflect a change in significant and increasingly tumultuoustheir mission – and changing technological region has suffered from American neglect.realities – not the termination of their As the crisis in East Timor demonstrated,mission. Moreover, in any realistic post- even the strongest of our allies in the regionunification scenario, U.S. forces are likely to – from Japan to South Korea to Australia –have some role in stability operations in possess limited military capabilities andNorth Korea. It is premature to speculate on little ability to project their forces rapidly inthe precise size and composition of a post- a crisis or sustain them over time. At theunification U.S. presence in Korea, but it is same time, the East Timor crisis and thenot too early to recognize that the presence larger question of political reform in 18
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New CenturyIndonesia and Malaysia highlight the vola- intermittent and U.S. military presence atility of the region. Finally, Southeast Asia periodic affair. For this reason, an increasedregion has long been an area of great interest naval presence in Southeast Asia, whileto China, which clearly seeks to regain influ- necessary, will not be sufficient; as in theence in the region. In recent years, China Balkans, relying solely on allied forces orhas gradually increased its presence and the rotation of U.S. forces in stabilityoperations in the region. operations not only increases the stress on those forces but undercuts the political goals Raising U.S. military strength in East of such missions. For operational as well asAsia is the key to coping with the rise of political reasons, stationing rapidly mobileChina to great-power status. For this to U.S. ground and air forces in the region willproceed peacefully, U.S. armed forces must be required.retain their military preeminence and there-by reassure our regional allies. In Northeast Moreover, a return to Southeast AsiaAsia, the United will add impetus to the slow process ofStates must In Southeast alliance-building now afoot in the region. Itmaintain and is conventional wisdom that the nations oftighten its ties Asia, American Southeast Asia are resistant to a NATO-likewith the Re- forces are too regional alliance, but the regional responsepublic of Korea sparse to address to the East Timor crisis – including that ofand Japan. In the new Indonesian government – has beenSoutheast Asia, rising security encouraging. Indeed, forces from theonly the United requirements Philippines have replaced those fromStates can reach adequately. Australia as the lead element in the UNout to regional peacekeeping mission there. And certainlypowers like Australia, Indonesia and efforts through the Asian Regional ForumMalaysia and others. This will be a difficult suggest a trend to closer regionaltask requiring sensitivity to diverse national coordination that might develop into a moresentiments, but it is made all the more com- permanent, alliance-like arrangement. Inpelling by the emergence of new democratic this process, the United States has the keygovernments in the region. By guaranteeing role to play. A heightened U.S. militarythe security of our current allies and newly presence in Southeast Asia would be ademocratic nations in East Asia, the United strong spur to regional security cooperation,States can help ensure that the rise of China providing the core around which a de factois a peaceful one. Indeed, in time, American coalition could jell.and allied power in the region may provide aspur to the process of democratization inside Deployment BasesChina itself. As a supplement to forces stationed In sum, it is time to increase the pre- abroad under long-term basingsence of American forces in Southeast Asia. arrangements, the United States should seekControl of key sea lines of communication, to establish a network of “deploymentensuring access to rapidly growing eco- bases” or “forward operating bases” tonomies, maintaining regional stability while increase the reach of current and futurefostering closer ties to fledgling democracies forces. Not only will such an approachand, perhaps most important, supporting the improve the ability to project force tonascent trends toward political liberty are all outlying regions, it will help circumvent theenduring security interests for America. No political, practical and financial constraintsU.S. strategy can constrain a Chinese on expanding the network of Americanchallenge to American regional leadership if bases overseas.our security guarantees to Southeast Asia are 19
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century These deployment or forward operating heavy cargo aircraft; have modern refuelingbases can range from relatively modest and emergency services; ramp space to parkagreements with other nations as well as several AWACS-size planes and meet amodest improvements to existing facilities variety of other requirements, including safeand bases. Prepositioned materiel also quarters and offices for American personnel.would speed the initial deployment and Yet the command believes that for aimprove the sustainability of U.S. forces relatively small cost – perhaps $120 millionwhen deployed for training, joint training for the first two of three planned bases – and with the host with minimal permanent manning it can It would be wise to nation, or offset the loss of a strategic asset like reduce the operations in Howard. time of crisis. frequency of Costs for A recent study done for the Air Force carrier presence in these indicates that a worldwide network of the Mediterranean improvements forward operating bases – perhaps more and the Gulf while can be shared sophisticated and suited for combat with the host operations than the counterdrug locations increasing U.S. nation and be planned by SOUTHCOM – might cost $5 Navy presence in offset as part billion to $10 billion through 2010. The the Pacific. of U.S. study speculates that some of the cost might foreign be paid for by host nations anxious tosecurity assistance, and would help reduce cement ties with the United States, or, inthe requirement for U.S. forces to deploy to Europe, be considered as common NATO“bare bones” facilities. Such installations assets and charged to the NATO commonwould be a “force multiplier” in power fund.projection operations, as well as helpsolidify political and security ties with host While it should be a clear U.S. policynations. that such bases are intended as a supplement to the current overseas base structure, they Currently, U.S. Southern Command, the could also be seen as a precursor to anPentagon’s regional command for Latin expanded structure. This might be attractiveAmerica, is moving to implement a plan for to skittish allies – as in the Persian Gulf“forward operating locations” to make up region, where a similar system is infor the loss of Howard Air Force Base in the operation – for whom close ties withwake of the U.S. withdrawal from Panama America provokes domestic politicaland the return of the Canal Zone. Indeed, controversy. It would also increase thesustaining effective counterdrug air effectiveness of current U.S. forces in aoperations will be difficult after the loss of huge region like Southeast Asia,Howard until arrangements for the new supplementing naval operations in thelocations are in place. To achieve full region. Such a network also would greatlycoverage of the region for counterdrug increase U.S. operational flexibility in timesoperations, the command plans to utilize of conflict.airfields ranging from Puerto Rico toEcuador. Rotational Naval Forces In addition to securing agreements that The size of today’s Navy and Marinepermit adequate access for U.S. forces to Corps is driven primarily by the demands ofairfields, the new locations must be capable current rotation policy; the requirement forof 24-hour, all-weather operations; have 11-carrier Navy is a reflection of theadequate air traffic control; have runways of perceived need to keep, on average, aboutat least 8000 feet that are capable of bearing 20
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurythree carriers deployed at any one time. But presence missions than with carrier battlebecause the carrier based in Japan is consi- groups. As cruise missiles increasinglydered “deployed” even when in port and not become the Navy’s first-strike weapon ofat sea, the real ratio of total ships to ships at choice, the value of cruise missile platformssea is closer to five- or six-to-one. Indeed, as a symbol of American might around theaccording to the Quadrennial Defense world are coming to surpass the deterrentReview analysis, the requirements for Navy value of the carrier. Unfortunately, duringforces under “presence” missions exceeds the course of the post-Cold-War drawdown,the two-war requirement for Navy forces by the Navy has divested itself of relativelyabout 20 percent. more surface combatants and submarines than aircraft carriers. Though this makes Current rotation plans call for a contin- sense in terms of carrier operations – Aegis-uous battle group presence in Northeast Asia equipped cruisers and destroyers have farand close to continuous presence in the greater capabilities and range than previousPersian Gulf and Mediterranean Sea. generations of ships, for example – this nowHowever, significant changes in Navy limits the Navy’s ability to transition to newcarrier presence and rotation patterns are ways of conducting both its presence andcalled for. Given the ability to station land- potential wartime missions.based forces in Europe and the Gulf, and thesize and nature of the East Asia theater, it Moreover, as the Navy introduces newwould be wise to reduce the frequency of classes of ships, its manpower requirementscarrier presence in the Mediterranean and – one of the important factors in determiningthe Gulf while increasing U.S. Navy the length of deployments and thus overallpresence in the Pacific. Further, it is Navy rotational policy – will be reduced.preferable, for strategic and operational The planned DD-21 destroyer will cut crewreasons, to create a second major home port size from 300 to 100. Reduced crew size, asfor a carrier battle group in the southern well as improved overall ship performance,Pacific, perhaps in Australia or the will increase the opportunities to rotatePhilippines. Generally speaking, the crews while keeping ships deployed; theemphasis of Navy operations, and carrier complexity of crew operations involvingoperations in particular, should be increas- 100 sailors and officers is far less than, foringly weighted toward the western Pacific. example, the 6,000-man crew of a carrierMarine deployments would follow suit. plus its air wing. In sum, new capabilities will open up new ways of conducting Secondarily, the Navy should begin to missions that will allow for increased navalconsider other ways of meeting its vital presence at a lower cost. 21
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century IV REBUILDING TODAY’S ARMED SERVICES Executing the variety of missions percent and its European garrison by threeoutlined above depends upon the capabilities quarters. At the end of the Cold War, theof the U.S. armed services. For the past Army budget was 50 percent higher than itdecade, the health of the armed services has is this year; its procurement spending almoststeadily declined. Not merely have their 70 percent higher.budgets been dramatically reduced, theirforce structures cut and their personnel At the same time, the Army’s role instrength sapped, modernization programs post-Cold-War military operations remainsstarved and efforts at transformation the measure of American geopoliticalstrangled, but the quality of military life, commitment. In the 1991 Gulf War, theessential for preserving a volunteer force, limits of Bush Administration policy werehas been degraded. From barracks to revealed by theheadquarters to maintenance bay, the reluctance to Elements ofservices’ infrastructure has suffered from engage in land U.S. Armyneglect. The quality of military housing, combat and the Europe shouldespecially abroad, ill becomes a great nation. limit on groundThe other sinews of a strong service, parti- operations be redeployed tocularly including the military education and within the Southeasttraining systems, have been dispropor- Kuwait theater. Europe, while ationately and shortsightedly reduced. In the Balkans, permanent unitShortages of manpower result in soldiers, relatively shortsailors, airmen and Marines spending air campaigns should be basedincreased amounts of time on base main- have been in the Persiantenance – mowing grass, repairing roofs, followed by Gulf region.“painting rocks.” Most disappointing of all, extended groundmilitary culture and the confidence of operations; even the 78 days of Operationservice members in their senior leaders is Allied Force pale in comparison to the long-suffering. As several recent studies and term effort to stabilize Kosovo. In short, thesurveys have demonstrated, civil-military value of land power continues to appeal to arelations in contemporary America are global superpower, whose security interestsincreasingly tense. rest upon maintaining and expanding a world-wide system of alliances as well as onArmy: To ‘Complete’ Europe the ability to win wars. While maintaining its combat role, the U.S. Army has acquiredAnd Defend the Persian Gulf new missions in the past decade – most immediately, missions associated with Of all the armed services, the Army has completing the task of creating a Europebeen most profoundly changed by the end of “whole and free” and defending Americanthe Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet interests in the Persian Gulf and Middleempire in Eastern Europe. The Army’s East.active-duty strength has been reduced by 40 22
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century These new missions will require the increase the effectiveness of currentcontinued stationing of U.S. Army units combat systems through “digiti-abroad. Although these units should be zation” – the process of creatingreconfigured and repositioned to reflect tactical information networks. Thecurrent realities, their value as a Army should accelerate its plans torepresentation of America’s role as the purchase medium-weight vehicles,prime guarantor of security is as great as acquire the Comanche helicopter andtheir immediate war-fighting capabilities. the HIMARS rocket-artillery system;Indeed, the greatest problem confronting the likewise, the heavy Crusader artilleryArmy today is providing sufficient forces for system, though a highly capableboth these vital missions; the Army is howitzer, is an unwise investmentsimply too small to do both well. given the Army’s current capabilities and future needs, and should be These broad missions will continue to canceled.justify the requirement for a large activeU.S. Army. The Army’s increasing use of • Improve the combat readiness ofreserve component forces for these current units by increasing personnelconstabulary missions breaks the implied strength and revitalizing combatcompact with reservists that their role is to training.serve as a hedge against a genuine militaryemergency. As long as the U.S. garrisons in • Make efforts to improve the quality ofthe Balkans, for example, require large soldier life to sustain the currentnumbers of linguists, military police, civil “middle class,” professional Army.affairs and other specialists, the active-dutyArmy must boost its ranks of soldiers with • Be repositioned and reconfigured inthese skills. Likewise, as high-intensity light of current strategic realities:combat changes, the Army must find new elements of U.S. Army Europe shouldways to recruit and retain soldiers with high- be redeployed to Southeast Europe,technology skills, perhaps creating while a permanent unit should bepartnerships with industry for extremely based in the Persian Gulf region;skilled reservists, or considering some skills simultaneously, forward-deployedas justifying a warrant-officer, rather than an Army units should be reconfigured toenlisted, rank structure. In particular, the be better capable of independentArmy should: operations that include ongoing constabulary missions as well as the• Be restored in active-duty strength initial phases of combat. and structure to meet the require- ments of its current missions. Overall • Reduce the strength of the Army active strength should rise to approxi- National Guard and Army Reserve, mately 525,000 soldiers from the yet recognize that these components current strength of 475,000. Much of are meant to provide a hedge against this increase should bolster the over- a genuine, large-scale, unanticipated deployed and under-manned units military emergency; the continuing that provide combat support and reliance on large numbers of combat service support, such as reservists for constabulary missions is military intelligence, military police, inappropriate and short-sighted. and other similar units. • Have its budget increased from the• Undertake selective modernization current level of $70 billion annually to efforts, primarily to increase its $90 to $95 billion per year. tactical and operational mobility and 23
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New CenturyThe Current State of the Army manning in critical combat and maintenance specialties. Army leaders frankly admit that Measuring by its ability to perform any they have too few soldiers to man theirof the missions outlined above – overseas current force structure, and shortages ofpresence, fighting major theater wars, NCOs and officers are increasingly com-transforming for the future – the Army today mon. For example, in Fiscal Year 1997, theis ill prepared. The most immediate Army had only 67 percent to 88 percent ofproblem is the decline in current readiness. its needs in the four maintenance specialtiesUntil the spring of 1998, the Army had for its tanks and mechanized infantrymanaged to contain the worst effects of vehicles. In the officer ranks, there arefrequent deployments, keeping its so-called significant shortfalls in the captain and“first-to-fight” units ready to react to a crisis major grades. The result of these shortagesthat threatened to become a major theater in the field is that junior officers and NCOswar. But now, as recently retired Army are being asked to assume the duties of theChief of Staff Gen. Dennis Reimer next higher grade; the “ultimate effect,”explained to Congress: reported Gen. Reimer, “is a reduction in experience, particularly at the…‘tip of the [C]ommanders Army-wide report that spear.’” they are reducing the frequency, scope, and duration of their exercises…. The Army’s ability to meet its major- Additionally, commanders war requirements, particularly on the are not always able to timetables demanded by the war plans of the make training as realistic theater commanders-in-chief, is uncertain at and demanding as they best. Although on paper the Army can meet would like. In some cases, these requirements, the true state of affairs is commands are not able to afford the optimum mix of more complex. The major-theater-war simulations to live-fire review conducted for the QDR assumed that Reimer training events, resulting each unit would arrive on the battlefield in less-experienced staffs. fully trained and ready, but manpower and Several commands report that they are training shortages across the Army make unable to afford the participation of their that a doubtful proposition, at least without aviation units in Combat Training Center delays in deployment. Even could the rotations. Overall, affordable training immediate manpower shortages be reme- compromises are lowering the training died, any attempt to improve training – as proficiency bar and resulting in was done even in the run-up to Operation inexperience….Already, readiness at the battalion level is starting to decline – a Desert Storm – would prove to be a signi- fact that is not going unnoticed at our ficant bottleneck. The Army’s maneuver Combat Training Centers. training centers are not able to increase capacity sufficiently or rapidly enough. In recent years, both the quality and Under the current two-war metric, high-quantity of such training has diminished. intensity combat is envisioned as a “come-Typically, in prior years, a rotational unit as-you-are” affair, and the Army today ismight have eight battalion-level field significantly less well prepared for suchtraining “battles” prior to its Fort Irwin wars than it was in 1990.rotation, and another eight while at thetraining center. Today, heavy forces almost Army Forces Basednever conduct full battalion field exercises, In the United Statesand now are lucky to get more than six at theNational Training Center. The primary missions of Army units Like the other services, the Army based in the United States are to rapidlycontinues to be plagued by low levels of 24
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centuryreinforce forward-deployed units in times ofcrisis or combat and to provide units capableof reacting to unanticipated contingencies.In addition, the service must continue toraise, train and equip all Army forces,including those of the Army National Guardand Army Reserve. While the reforming theposture of its forces abroad is perhaps thelargest task facing the Army for theimmediate future, it is inevitably intertwinedwith the need to rebuild and reconfigure theArmy at home. The need to respond with decisive forcein the event of a major theater war inEurope, the Persian Gulf or East Asia will The Army needs to restore unitsremain the principal factor in determining based in the United States – thoseArmy force structure for U.S.-based units. needed in the event of a majorHowever one judges the likelihood of such theater war – to high states ofwars occurring, it is essential to retain readiness.sufficient capabilities to bring them to asatisfactory conclusion, including the more deployable, and the Army mustpossibility of a decisive victory that results continue to introduce similar modifications.in long-term political or regime change. The Moreover, Army training should continue itscurrent stateside active Army force structure emphasis on combined-arms, task-force– 23 maneuver brigades – is barely adequate combat operations. In the continentalto meet the potential demands. Not only are United States, Army force structure shouldthese units few in number, but their combat consist of three fully-manned, three-brigadereadiness has been allowed to slip danger- heavy divisions; two light divisions; and twoously over recent years. Manning levels airborne divisions. In addition, the statesidehave dropped and training opportunities Army should retain four armored cavalryhave been diminished and degraded. These regiments in its active structure, plus severalunits need to be returned to high states of experimental units devoted to transformationreadiness and, most importantly, must regain activities. This would total approximatelytheir focus on their combat missions. 27 ground maneuver brigade-equivalents. Because the divisional structure still Yet such a force, though capable ofremains an economical and effective delivering and sustaining significant combatorganization in large-scale operations as power for initial missions, will remainwell as an efficient administrative structure, inadequate to the full range of strategic tasksthe division should remain the basic unit for facing the Army. Thus, the service mustmost stateside Army forces, even while the increasingly rely on Guard units to execute aservice creates new, smaller independent portion of its potential warfighting missions,organizations for operations abroad. The not seek to foist overseas presence missionsArmy is currently undergoing a redesign of off on what should remain part-timethe basic divisional structure, reducing the soldiers. To allow the Army National Guardsize of the basic maneuver battalion in to play its essential role in fighting large-response to the improvements that advanced scale wars, the Army must take a number oftechnologies and the untapped capabilities steps to ensure the readiness of Guard units.of current systems permit. This is a modest The first is to better link the Guard to thebut important step that will make these units active-duty force, providing adequate 25
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centuryresources to increase the combat effective- its traditional role would allow for a furtherness of large Guard units, perhaps to include modest strength reduction in the Armythe partial manning of the first-to-deploy National Guard. Such a move would alsoGuard brigades with an active command lessen the strain of repeated deployments incadre. Secondly, the Guard’s overall contingency operations, which isstructure must be adjusted and the overall jeopardizing the model of the part-timenumber of Army National Guard units – and soldier upon which Guard is premised.especially Guard infantry divisions – Similarly, the Army Reserve should retainreduced. This would not only eliminate its traditional roleunnecessary formations but would permit Returning the as a federal force,improved manning of the first-to-fight National Guard a supplement toGuard units, which need to be manned at the active force,levels significantly above 100 percent to its traditional but demands forpersonnel strength to allow for timely role would individualdeployment during crises and war. allow for a augmentees for reduction in contingency In addition, the Army needs to operationsrationalize the missions of the Army strength while reduced throughReserve. Without the efforts of Reservists lessening the improvements toover the past decade, the Army’s ability to strain of active Armyconduct the large number of contingency operations andoperations it has faced would be severely repeated deployments,compromised. Yet the effort to rationalize contingency organizations, anddeployments, as discussed in the previous operation even addedsection, would also result in a reduction of deployments. personneldemand for Army Reservists, particularly strength. In thethose with highly specialized skills. Once event thatthe missions in the Balkans, for example, are American forces become embroiled in twoadmitted to be long-term deployments, the large-scale wars at once, or nearly at once,role of Army Reserve forces should be Army reserve components may provide thediminished and the active Army should edge for decisive operations. Such aassume all but a very small share of the capability is a cornerstone of U.S. militarymission. strategy, not to be frittered away in ongoing contingency operations. In sum, the missions of the Army’s tworeserve components must be adjusted to A second mission for Army units basedpost-Cold-War realities as must the missions in the United States is to respond toof the active component. The importance of unanticipated contingencies. With morethese citizen-soldiers in linking an increas- forward-based units deployed along aningly professional force to the mainstream of expanded American security perimeterAmerican society has never been greater, around the globe, these unforeseen crisesand the failure to make the necessary adjust- should be less debilitating. Units like thements to their mission has jeopardized those 82nd and 101st Airborne divisions and thelinks. The Army National Guard should Army’s two light infantry divisions, as wellretain its traditional role as a hedge against as the small elements of the 3rd Mechanizedthe need for a larger-than-anticipated force Infantry Division, that are kept on high alert,in combat; indeed, it may play a larger role will continue to provide these neededin U.S. war-planning than heretofore. It capabilities. So will Army specialshould not be used primarily to provide operations units such as the 75th Rangercombat service support to active Army units Regiment. Moreover, the creation ofengaged in current operations. A return to middle-weight, independent units will begin 26
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurythe process of transforming the Army for whelming superiority in direct-firefuture contingency needs. As the engagements, typified by the performance oftransformation process matures, a wider the Bradley fighting vehicle and M1 Abramsvariety of Army units will be suitable for tank in the Gulf War (and indeed, in theunanticipated contingency operations. performance of the Marines’ Light Armored Vehicle), as well as the improved accuracyForward-based Forces and lethality of artillery fires, plus the capabilities of U.S. strike aircraft, will provide such units with a very substantial American military presence abroad combat capability.draws heavily on ground forces and theArmy, which is the service best suited to These forward-based, independent unitsthese long-term missions. In the post-Cold- will be increasingly built around theWar environment, these forward-based acquisition and management of information.forces are, in essence, conducting This will be essential for combat operationsreconnaissance and security missions. The – precise, long-range fires require accurateunits involved are required to maintain and timely intelligence and robustpeace and stability in the regions they patrol, communications links – but also for stabilityprovide early warning of imminent crises, operations. Units stationed in the Balkans,and to shape the early stages of any conflict or Turkey, or in Southeast Asia, will requirethat might occur while additional forces are the ability to understand and operate indeployed from the United States or unique political-military environments, andelsewhere. By virtue of this mission, these the seemingly tactical decisions made byunits should be self-contained, combined- soldiers on the ground may have strategicarms units with a wide variety of consequences. While some of these needscapabilities, able to operate over long can be fulfilled by civilians, both Americansdistances, with sophisticated means of and local nationals, units stationed on thecommunication and access to high levels of American security frontier must have theU.S. intelligence. Currently, most forward- capabilities, cohesion and personnelbased Army units do not meet this continuity their mission demands. Chiefdescription. among them is an awareness of the security and political environment in which they are Such requirements suggest that such operating. Especially those forces stationedunits should be approximately brigade or in volatile regions must have their ownregimental-sized formations, perhaps 5,000 human intelligence collection capacity,strong. They will need sufficient personnel perhaps through an attached special forcesstrength to be able to conduct sustained unit if not solely through an organictraditional infantry missions, but with the intelligence unit.mobility to operate over extended areas.They must have enough direct firepower to The technologies required to field suchdominate their immediate tactical situation, forces already exist and many are already inand suitable fire support to prevent such production or in the Army inventory. Newrelatively small and independent units from force designs and the application ofbeing overrun. However, the need for fire information technologies can give newsupport need not entail large amounts of utility to existing weaponry. However, theintegral artillery or other forms of sup- problem of mobility and weight becomes anporting firepower. While some artillery even more pressing problem should groundwill prove necessary, a substantial part of forces be positioned in Southeast Asia.the fire support should come from Army Even forward-based forces would need to beattack aviation and deeper fixed-wing rapidly deployed over very long distances ininterdiction. The combination of over- times of crisis, both through fast sealift and 27
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centuryairlift; in short, every pound and every cubic take its lessons to heart, breaking downfoot must count. In designing such forces, bureaucratic resistance to change.the Army should consider more innovativeapproaches. One short-term approach could In addition to these newer force designsbe to build such a unit around the V-22 for Europe, the Gulf, and elsewhere in EastOsprey tilt-rotor aircraft now being built for Asia, the Army should retain a forcethe Marine Corps and for special operations approximating that currently based in Korea.forces. A second interim approach would be In addition to headquarters units there, theto expand the capabilities of current air- U.S. ground force presence is built aroundmobile infantry, by adding refueling probes the two brigades of the 2nd Infantry Division.to existing helicopters, as on special This unit is already a hybrid, neither aoperations aircraft. Another approach could textbook heavy division nor a light division.involve the construction of truly fast sealift While retaining the divisional structure tovessels. allow for the smooth introduction of follow- on forces in times In sum, it should be clear that these American of crisis, the Armyindependent, forward-based Army units can landpower is also should beginbecome “change-agents” within the service, the essential to redesign this unitopening opportunities for transformational to allow for longer-concepts, even as they perform vital stability link in the range operations.operations in their regions. In addition, such chain that Because of theunits would need to train for combat translates U.S. massive amount ofoperations on a regular basis, and will military North Koreanrequire new training centers as well as new artillery, counter-garrisons in more relevant strategic supremacy into battery artillerylocations. They will operate in a more American fires will play andispersed manner reflecting new concepts of geopolitical important role incombat operations as well as the demands of any war on thecurrent stability operations. In urban areas preeminence. peninsula,or in the jungles of Southeast Asia, they will suggesting that improving the rocketoperate in complex terrain that may more artillery capabilities of the U.S. division is aaccurately predict future warfare. Certainly, modest but wise investment. Likewise,new medium-weight or air-mobile units will increasing the aviation and attack helicopterprovide a strong incentive to begin to assets of U.S. ground forces in Korea wouldtransform the Army more fundamentally for give commanders options they do not nowthe future. Not only would increased have. The main heavy forces of the Southmobility and information capabilities allow Korean army are well trained and equipped,for new ways of conducting operations, the but optimized for defending Seoul and thelack of heavy armor would mandate new Republic of Korea as far north as possible.tactics, doctrines and organizations. Even In time, the 2nd Infantry Division’s twoamong those units equipped with the current brigades might closely resemble the kind ofAbrams tank and Bradley fighting vehicle, independent, combined-arms forces neededthe requirement for independent operations, elsewhere.closer ties to other services’ forces andintroduction of new intelligence and Army Modernization and Budgetscommunications capabilities would result ininnovation. Most profoundly, such new Since the end of the Cold War, theunits and concepts would give the process of Army has suffered dramatic budgettransformation a purpose within the Army; cutbacks, particularly in weapons procure-soldiers would be a part of the process and ment and research, that have resulted in the 28
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurydegradation of current readiness described But, as the discussion of Armyabove and have restricted the service’s requirements above indicates, Armyability to modernize and innovate for the investments must be redirected as well asfuture. The Army’s current attempts at increased. For example, the Crusadertransformation have been hobbled by the artillery program, while perhaps the mostneed to find “bill-payers” within the Army advanced self-propelled howitzer everbudget. produced, is difficult to justify under conditions of revolutionary change. The In Fiscal Year 1992, the first post-Cold- costs of the howitzer, not merely inWar and post-Gulf War Army budget was budgetary terms but in terms of the$91 billion measured in constant 2000 opportunity cost of a continuingdollars. This year, the Congress has commitment to an increasingly outmodedapproved $69.5 billion for Army operations paradigm of warfare, far outweigh the– including several billion to pay for benefits; the Crusader should be terminated.operations in the Balkans – and PresidentClinton’s request for 2001 is $70.6 billion,more than $2 billion of which will beallocated to Balkans operations. Likewise,Army procurement spending is way down.Through the Clinton years, service procure-ment has averaged around $8 billion,dipping to a low of $7.1 billion in 1995; the2000 request was for $9.7 billion, by far thelargest Army procurement request since theGulf War. By contrast, Army weapons In addition to terminating thepurchases averaged about $23 billion per Crusader artillery program, the Army’syear during the early and mid-1980s, when annual budget must increase to thethe current generation of major combatsystems – the M1 tank, Bradley fighting $90 to $95 billion level to financevehicle, Apache and Black Hawk helicopters current missions and the Army’s long-and Patriot missile system – entered term transformation.production. However, addressing the Army’s many To field an Army capable of meeting the challenges will require significantlynew missions and challenges discussed increased funding. Though the active-dutyabove, service budgets must return to the force is 40 percent smaller than its total atlevel of approximately $90 to $95 billion in the end of the Cold War, several generationsconstant 2000 dollars. Some of this increase of Army leadership have chosen to retainwould help the Army fill out both its under- troop strength, paid for by cuts inmanned units and refurbish the institutional procurement and research. This cannotArmy, as well as increasing the readiness of continue. While the Army may be too smallArmy National Guard units. New acqui- for the variety of missions discussed above,sition programs would include light armored its larger need is for reinvestment,vehicles, “digitized” command and control recapitalization and, especially,networks and other situational awareness transformation. Taken together, these needssystems, the Comanche helicopter, and far exceed the savings to be garnered by anyunmanned aerial vehicles. Renewed invest- possible internal reforms or efficiencies.ments in Army infrastructure would improve Terminating marginal programs like thethe quality of soldier life. The process of Crusader howitzer, trimming administrativetransformation would be reinvigorated. overhead, base closings and the like will not 29
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centuryfree up resources enough to finance the accuracy and virtual impunity. American airradical overhaul the Army needs. power has become a metaphor for as well as the literal manifestation of American American landpower remains the military preeminence.essential link in the chain that translates U.S.military supremacy into Americangeopolitical preeminence. Even as the meansfor delivering firepower on the battlefieldshift – strike aircraft have realized all but thewildest dreams of air power enthusiasts,unmanned aerial vehicles promise to extendstrike power in the near future, and theability to conduct strikes from space appears Specialized Air Force aircraft, like theon the not-too-distant horizon – the need for JSTARS above, are too few in numberground maneuvers to achieve decisive to meet current mission demands.political results endures. Regimes aredifficult to change based upon punishment Simultaneously, the Air Force has beenalone. If land forces are to survive and reduced by a third or more, and itsretain their unique strategic purpose in a operations have been increasingly diffused.world where it is increasingly easy to deliver In addition, the Air Force has taken on sofirepower precisely at long ranges, they many new missions that its fundamentalmust change as well, becoming more structure has been changed. During thestealthy, mobile, deployable and able to Cold War, the Air Force was geared to fightoperate in a dispersed fashion. The U.S. a large-scale air battle to clear the skies ofArmy, and American land forces more Soviet aircraft; today’s Air Force isgenerally, must increasingly complement the increasingly shaped to continue monotonousstrike capabilities of the other services. no-fly-zone operations, conduct periodicConversely, an American military force that punitive strikes, or to execute measured,lacks the ability to employ ground forces low-risk, no-fault air campaigns like Alliedthat can survive and maneuver rapidly on Force. The service’s new “Airfuture battlefields will deprive U.S. political Expeditionary Force” concept turns theleaders of a decisive tool of diplomacy. classic, big-war “air campaign” model largely on its head.Air Force: Toward a Global Like the Army, the Air Force continuesFirst-Strike Force to operate Cold-War era systems in this new strategic and operational environment. The The past decade has been the best of Air Force’s frontline fighter aircraft, the F-times and worst of times for the U.S. Air 15 and F-16, were built to out-perform moreForce. From the Gulf War to Operation numerous Soviet fighters; U.S. supportAllied Force over Kosovo, the increasing aircraft, from AWACS and JSTARSsophistication of American air power – with command-and-control planes to electronicits stealth aircraft; precision-guided jamming aircraft to tankers, were meant tomunitions; all-weather and all-hours work in tandem with large numbers ofcapabilities; and the professionalism of American fighters. The U.S. bomber fleet’spilots, planners and support crews – has primary mission was nuclear deterrence.allowed the Air Force to boast legitimately The Air Force also has begun toof its “global reach, global power.” On purchase new generations of mannedshort notice, Air Force aircraft can attack combat aircraft that were designed duringvirtually any target on earth with great the late Cold War; the F-22 and, especially, 30
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurythe Joint Strike Fighter, are a response to • Realign the remaining Air Force unitsrequirements established long ago. in Europe, Asia and the United StatesConversely, the decision to terminate the B- to optimize their capabilities to2 bomber program was taken before its conduct multiple large-scale aireffectiveness as a long-range, precision, campaigns.conventional-strike platform wasestablished; in the wake of Operation Allied • Make selected investments in currentForce, regional commanders-in-chief have generations of combat and supportbegun to reevaluate how such a capability aircraft to sustain the F-15 and F-16might serve their uses. Further, the Air fleets for longer service life, purchaseForce should reevaluate the need for greater additional sets of avionics for special-numbers of long-range systems. In some mission fighters, increase plannedregions, the ability to operate from tactical fleets of AWACS, JSTARS and otherairfields is increasingly problematic and in electronic support planes, and expandothers – notably East Asia – the theater is stocks of precision-guided munitions.simply so vast that even “tactical,” in-theateroperations will require long-range • Develop plans to increase electroniccapabilities. warfare support fleets, such as by creating “Wild Weasel” and jammer In sum, the Air Force has begun to adapt aircraft based upon the F-15Eitself to the new requirements of the time, airframe.yet is far from completing the neededchanges to its posture, structure, or • Restore the condition of theprograms. Moreover, the Air Force is too institutional Air Force, expanding itssmall – especially its fleet of support aircraft personnel strength, rebuilding its– and poorly positioned to conduct sustained corps of pilots and experiencedoperations for maintaining American maintenance NCOs, expandingmilitary preeminence. Air Force procure- support specialties such as intelligencement funds have been reduced, and service and special police and reinvigoratingleaders have cut back on purchases of spare its training establishment.parts, support aircraft, and even replace-ments for current fighters in an attempt to • Overall Air Force active personnelkeep the F-22 program on track. Although strength should be graduallyair power remains the most flexible and increased by approximately 30,000 toresponsive element of U.S. military power, 40,000, and the service should rebuildthe Air Force needs to be restructured, a structure of 18 to 19 active and 8repositioned, revitalized and enlarged to reserve wing equivalents.assure continued “global reach, globalpower.” In particular, the Air Force should: The State of the Air Force• Be redeployed to reflect the shifts in international politics. Independent, Also like the Army, in recent years the expeditionary air wings containing a Air Force has undertaken missions broad mix of aircraft, including fundamentally different than those assigned electronic warfare, airborne during the Cold War. The years since the command and control, and other fall of the Berlin Wall have been anything support aircraft, should be based in but predictable. In 1997, the Air Force had Italy, Southeastern Europe, central four times more forces deployed than in and perhaps eastern Turkey, the 1989, the last year of the Cold War, but one Persian Gulf, and Southeast Asia. third fewer personnel on active duty. Modernization has slowed to a crawl. Under 31
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurysuch circumstances, the choices made to Defense has come to recognize the heavybuild a warfighting force can become burden placed upon the Air Force’sliabilities. As Thomas Moorman, vice chief AWACS and other specialized aircraft, theof staff of the Air Force from 1994 through study found that “specialized aircraft are1997, has stated: experiencing a rate of utilization well beyond the level that the current force None of us believed, at the end of the structure would seem able to support on a Cold War, that we would be doing long-term basis.” The study also revealed Northern Watch and Southern Watch in that the current fighter force is stretched to 1998. Bosnia still exists – everyone [in its limit as well. Under current assumptions, the Air Force has] been there since the current fighter structure “has the 1995….Couple that with the fact that capacity to meet the [peacekeeping] weve seen surges, particularly in Iraq. Saddam Hussein has been very effective demand, but with a meager reserve – only in pulling our chain, and weve had about a third of a squadron (8 aircraft) three major deployments, the last of beyond the demand.” An additional no-fly- which was very significant; it was 4,000 zone mission, such as is now being people and 100 aircraft. And we stayed conducted over the Balkans, for example, over there a lot longer than we thought “would be difficult to meet on a sustained we would. basis.” According to Ryan, the accumulation of these constabulary missions As a result, Air Force “readiness is has had a dramatic effect on the Air Force.slipping – it’s not just anecdotal; it’s He recently summarized the situation forfactual,” says Gen. Michael Ryan, the Air Congress:Force Chief of Staff. Since 1996, accordingto Ryan, the Air Force has experienced “an Our men and womenoverall 14 percent degradation in the opera- are separated fromtional readiness of our major operational their home basesunits.” And although Air Force leaders and families forclaim that the service holds all its units at unpredictable andthe same levels of readiness – that it does extended periods every year — with anot, as the Navy does, practice “tiered” significant negativereadiness where first-to-fight units get more impact on retention.resources – the level of readiness in stateside Our home-station Ryanunits has slipped below those deployed manning has becomeoverseas. For example, Air Combat inadequate — and workload hasCommand, the main tactical fighter increased — because forces arecommand based in the United States, has frequently deployed even though home-suffered a 50 percent drop in readiness rates, station operations must continue atcompared to the service-wide drop in near-normal pace. Our units deployingoperational readiness of 14 percent. forward must carry much more infrastructure to expeditionary bases. Force protection and critical mission These readiness problems are the result security for forward-deployed forces isof a pace of operations that is slowly but a major consideration. The demands onsurely consuming the Air Force. A 1998 our smaller units, such as [intelligence,study by RAND, “Air Force Operations surveillance and reconnaissance] andOverseas in Peacetime: OPTEMPO and combat search and rescue units, haveForce Structure Implications,” concluded dramatically increased — they arethat today’s Air Force is barely large enough properly sized for two major theaterto sustain current no-fly-zone and similar wars, but some are inadequately sizedconstabulary contingencies, let alone handle for multiple, extended contingency operations. Due to the unpredictablea major war. While the Department of 32
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century nature of contingencies, training the century, the average Air Force aircraft requirements have been expanded, and will be 20 years old and by 2015, even training cannot always be fully allowing for the introduction of the F-22 and accomplished while deployed Joint Strike Fighter and continuing supporting contingencies. Because purchases of current aircraft such as the C- contingencies are unpredictable, it is much more difficult to use Reserve 17, the average age of the fleet will be 30 Component forces, many of whom need years old. The increased expense of time to coordinate absences with operating older aircraft is well illustrated by civilian employers before they are free the difference in airframe depot maintenance to take up their Air Force jobs. cost between the oldest F-15A and B models – at approximately 21 years old, such repairs These cumulative stresses have created a average about $1.9 million per aircraft –panoply of problems for the Air Force: versus the newestrecruiting and retention of key personnel, Air Combat F-15E model – atespecially pilots, is an unprecedented worry; Command, the 8 years in averagethe service’s fleet of aircraft, especially age, the samesupport aircraft, is aging significantly; spare main tactical kinds of repairsparts shortages, along with shortages of fighter cost about $1.3electronic subsystems and advanced command based million per plane,munitions, restricts both operational and in the United a 37 percent costtraining missions; and the quality and difference. Butquantity of air combat training has declined. States, has perhaps the suffered a 50 costliest measure Even as routine, home-station combat percent drop in of an aging fleettraining has suffered in recent years, so have readiness rates. is that fewer airplanes arethe Air Force’s major air combat exercises.Lack of funds for training, reports Ryan, ready for combat.means that “aircrews will no longer be able Overall Air Force “non-mission capableto meet many training requirements and rates,” or grounded aircraft, have increasedthreat training will be reduced to unrealistic from 17 percent in 1991 to 25 percent today.level. Aircrews will develop a false sense of These rates continue to climb despite thesecurity while training against unrealistic fact that Air Force maintenance personnelthreats.” Similarly, the Air Force’s program are working harder and longer to put planesto provide advanced “aggressor” training to up. The process of parts cannibalization –its pilots is a shadow of its former self: transferring a part from one plane beingduring the 1980s there was one aggressor repaired to keep another flying – hasaircraft for every 35 Air Force fighters; increased by 58 percent from 1995 to 1998.today, the ratio is one for every 240 fighters.The frequency with which Air Force Some of the Air Force’s readinessaircrews participate in “Red Flag” exercises problems stem from the overall reduction inhas declined from once every 12 months to its procurement budget, combined with theonce every 18 months. service’s determination to keep the F-22 program on track – as much as possible. The Air Force’s problems are further The expense of the “Raptor” has forced thecompounded by the procurement holiday of Air Force to make repeated cuts in otherthe 1990s. The dramatic aging of the Air programs, not only in other aircraftForce fleet and the resulting increase in cost programs, but in spare parts and even inand maintenance workload caused by air- personnel programs; even the Air Force’scraft fatigue, corrosion and parts obsoles- pilot shortage stems in part from decisionscence is the second driving factor in de- taken to free up funds for the F-22. Thesecreasing service readiness. By the turn of effects have been doubly compounded by 33
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurythe changes in the pattern of Air Force In Europe, current forces should beoperations over the past 10 years. Support increased with additional support aircraft,aircraft such as the AWACS and JSTARS, ranging from an increased C-17 and tankerelectronic combat and tanker aircraft were fleet to AWACS, JSTARS and otherall intended to operate in concert with large electronic support planes. Existing forces,numbers of tactical aircraft in large-scale still organized in traditional wings, shouldoperations. But in fact, they are more often be supplemented by a composite wingcalled upon now to operate with just a permanently stationed at Incirlik Air Forcehandful of fighter or strike aircraft in no-fly Base in Turkey and that base should bezone operations or other contin-gencies. As improved significantly. The air wing ata result, these types of aircraft routinely are Aviano, Italy might be given a greaterrated as “low-density, high-demand” capability as that facility expands, as well.systems in the Pentagon’s joint-service Additionally, the Air Force should establishreadiness assessments; in other words, there the requirements for similar small compositeare too few of them to meet mission require- wings in Southeastern Europe. Over time,ments. The Air Force’s modernization U.S. Air Forces in Europe would increase byprogram has yet to fully reflect this pheno- one to two-and-one-half wing equivalents.menon. For example, the formal JSTARS Further, improvements should be made to“requirement” was reduced from 19 to 13 existing air bases in new and potentialaircraft; only lately has an increased re- NATO countries to allow for rapidquirement been recognized. Likewise, the deployments, contingency exercises, andoriginal C-17 procurement was cut from 210 extended initial operations in times of crisis.to 120 aircraft. In fact, to meet emerging These preparations should includerequirements, it is likely that 210 C-17s may modernized air traffic control, fuel, andbe too few. Overall, the Air Force’s weapons storage facilities, and perhapsmodernization programs need a thorough- small stocks of prepositioned munitions, asgoing reassessment in light of new missions well as sufficient ramp space to accom-and their requirements. modate surges in operations. Improvements also should be made to existing facilities inForward-Based Forces England to allow forward operation of B-2 bombers in times of crisis, to increase sortie rates if needed. The pattern of Air Force bases alsoneeds to be reconsidered. Currently, the Air In the Persian Gulf region, theForce maintains forward-based forces of provisional 4044th Wing should continue totwo-and-one-half wing equivalents in operate much as it has for the better part ofWestern Europe; one wing in the Pacific, in the last decade. However, the Air ForceJapan; a semi-permanent, composite wing of should take several steps to improve itsabout 100 aircraft scattered throughout the operations while deferring to local politicalGulf region; and a partial wing in central sensibilities. To relieve the stress ofTurkey at Incirlik Air Force Base. Even constant rotations, the Air Force mightallowing for the inherent flexibility and consider using more U.S. civilian contractrange of aircraft, these current forces need to workers in support roles – perhaps even tobe supplemented by additional forward- do aircraft maintenance or to providebased forces, additional permanent bases, additional security. While this mightand a network of contingency bases that increase the cost of these operations, itwould permit the Air Force to extend the might also be an incentive to get the Saudis,effectiveness of current and future aircraft Kuwaitis and other Gulf states to assume afleets as the American security perimeter greater share of the costs while preservingexpands. the lowest possible U.S. military profile. By the same token, further improvements in the 34
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centuryfacilities at Al Kharj in Saudi Arabia, invest in upgrades to regional airfields toespecially those that would improve the permit surge deployments and, incidentally,quality of life for airmen and allow help build ties with regional air forces.increased combat training, warrantadditional American as well as Saudi Air Force Units Basedinvestments. The Air Force presence in theGulf region is a vital one for U.S. military In the United Statesstrategy, and the United States should Even as the Air Force acceleratesconsider it a de facto permanent presence, operations and improves its reach in the keyeven as it seeks ways to lessen Saudi, regions of the world, it must retain sufficientKuwaiti and regional concerns about U.S. forces based in the United States to deploypresence. rapidly in times of crisis and be prepared to conduct large-scale air campaigns of the sort needed in major theater wars and to react to truly unforeseen contingencies. Indeed, the mobility and flexibility of air power virtually extinguishes the distinction between reinforcing and contingency forces. But it is clear that the Air Force’s current stateside strength of approximately eight to nine fighter-wing equivalents and fourThe overall effectiveness of the B-2 bomber wings is inadequate to these tasks. Further, the Air Force’s fleets of supportbomber is limited by the small size of aircraft are too small for rapid, large-scalethe fleet and the difficulties of deployments and sustained operations.operating solely from Whiteman AirForce Base in Missouri. The Air Force’s structure problems reflect troubles of types of aircraft as well as But it is in East Asia that the Air Force raw numbers. For example, when themust look to increase its capabilities and service retired its complements of F-4 “Wildreach. The service currently has about two Weasel” air defense suppression and EF-111wings worth of aircraft stationed at three electronic warfare aircraft, these missionsbases in Japan and Korea; like the Army, the were assumed by F-16s fitted with HARMAir Force is concentrated in Northeast Asia system pods and Navy and Marine EA-6Band lacks a permanent presence in Southeast “Prowlers,” respectively. The effect hasAsia, thus limiting its regional reach. The been to reduce the size of the F-16 fleetAir Force also has an F-15 wing in Alaska capable of doing other missions. The F-16that is officially part of its Pacific force, as was intended to be a multi-mission airplane,well. The Air Force needs roughly to but the heavy requirement for air defensedouble its forces stationed in East Asia, suppression, even in no-fly-zone operations,preferably dispersing its bases in the south means that these aircraft are only rarelyas it has in the north, perhaps by stationing a available for other duties, and their pilots’wing in the Philippines and Australia. As in skills rusty. Likewise, the loss of the EF-Europe, Air Force operations in East Asia 111 has thrust the entire jamming missionwould be greatly enhanced by the ability to on the small and old Prowler fleet, and hassustain long-range bomber operations out of left the Air Force without a jammer of itsAustralia, perhaps also by including the own. The shortage of these aircraft is sospecial maintenance facilities needed to great that, during Operation Allied Force,operate the B-2 and other stealth aircraft. no-fly-zone operations over Iraq wereFurther, the Air Force would be wise to suspended. 35
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century The Air Force’s airlift fleet is similarly operations. The bulk of the B-2 fleet istoo small. The lift requirements established often reserved for nuclear missions; in sum,in the early 1990s did not anticipate the pace the Air Force could generate no more thanand number of contingency operations in the two B-2s every other day for Allied Force.post-Cold-War world. Nor have the require- Whatever the performance of the B-2, itsments been changed to reflect force design overall effectiveness is severely limited bychanges – both those already made, such as the small size of the fleet and the difficultiesde facto expeditionary forces in the Army of operating solely from Whiteman. Whileand Air Force, nor those advocated in this the cost of restarting the B-2 production linereport. The need to operate in a more dis- may be prohibitive,persed fashion will increase airlift require- The Air Force’s the need is obvious;ments substantially. fleets of support the Air Force could increase the Further, the Air Force’s need for other aircraft are too “productivity” ofsupporting aircraft is also greater than its small for rapid, B-2 operations bycurrent fleet. As Air Force Chief of Staff large-scale establishingGen. Ryan has observed, his service is far overseas locationsshort of being a “two-war” force in many of deployments for which the planethese capabilities. Even in daily no-fly-zone and sustained could operate inoperations with relatively small numbers of operations. times of need, andfighters, the nature of the mission demands by developing aAWACS, JSTARS and other long-range deployable B-2 maintenance capability. Aselectronic support aircraft; EA-6Bs and F- the Air Force contemplates its future bomber16s with HARM pods for jamming and air force, it should seek to avoid such adefense suppression; and several tankers to dilemma as it develops successors to the B-permit extended operations over long 2. And considering the limited viability ofranges. The “supporter-to-shooter” ratios of the bomber leg of the U.S. nuclear triad, thethe Cold War and of large-scale operations Air Force might seek to have bombers nosuch as the Desert Storm air campaign have longer counted for arms control purposes,been completely inverted. Air Force and equip its B-52s and B-2s solely forrequirements of such aircraft for perimeter conventional strike.patrolling missions and for reinforcingmissions far exceed the service’s current At minimum, the Air Force based in thefleets; no previous strategic review has United States should be increased by two orcontemplated these requirements. While more wing equivalents. However, thesuch an analysis is beyond the scope of this majority of these increases should bestudy, it is obvious that significant directed at the specialized aircraft thatenlargements of Air Force structure are represent the “low-density, high-demand”needed. air assets now so lacking. But while this will do much to alleviate the stresses on the Finally, the Air Force’s fleet of long- current fighter fleet, it will not be enough torange bombers should be reassessed. As offset the effects of the higher tempo ofmentioned above, the operations of the B-2s operations of the last decade; the F-15 andduring Allied Force are certain to lead to a F-16 fleets face looming block obsoles-reappraisal of the regional commanders’ cence. This will be partly offset by therequirements for that aircraft. Yet another introduction of the F-22 into the Air Forcestriking feature of B-2 operations during the inventory, but as an air superiority aircraft,Kosovo war was the length of the missions – the F-22 is not well suited to today’s lessit required a 30-hour, roundtrip sortie from stressful missions. The Air Force is buyingWhiteman Air Force Base in Missouri for a new race car when it also needs a fleet ofeach strike – and the difficulty in sustaining minivans. The Air Force should purchase 36
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurynew multi-mission F-15E and F-16 aircraft. Army, that remains the core of America’sThe C-17 program should be restored to its ability to apply decisive military poweroriginal 210-aircraft buy, and the Air Force when its pleases. To dissipate this ability toshould address the need for additional deliver a rapid hammer blow is to lose theelectronic support aircraft, both in the near- key component of American militaryterm but also in the longer term as part of its preeminence.transformation efforts. Air Force Modernization If the F-22 is less than perfectly suitedto today’s needs, the problem of the Joint And BudgetsStrike Fighter program is a larger one As with the Army, Air Force budgetsaltogether. Moreover, more than half the have been significantly reduced during thetotal F-22 program cost has been spent past decade, even as the service has taken onalready, while spending to date on the JSF – new, unanticipated missions and attempts toalthough already billions of dollars – wrestle with the implications ofrepresents the merest tip of what may prove expeditionary operations. At the height ofto be a $223 billion iceberg. And greater the Reagan buildup, in 1985, the Air Forcethan the technological challenges posed by was authorized $140 billion; by 1992, thethe JSF or its total cost in dollars is the first post-Cold-War budget figure fell to $98question as to whether the program, which billion. During the Clinton years, Air Forcewill extend America’s commitment to budgets dropped to a low of $73 billion inmanned strike aircraft for 50 years or more, 1997; the administration’s 2001 request wasrepresents an operationally sound decision. for $83 billion (all figures are FY2000Indeed, as will be apparent from the constant dollars).discussion below on military transformationand the revolution in military affairs, it During this period, Air Force leadersseems unlikely that the current paradigm of sacrificed many other essential projects towarfare, dominated by the capabilities of keep the F-22 program going; simplytactical, manned aircraft, will long endure. restoring the service to health – correctingAn expensive Joint Strike Fighter with for the shortfalls of recent years plus thelimited capabilities and significant technical internal distortions caused by servicerisk appears to be a bad investment in such a leadership decisions – will require time andlight, and the program should be terminated. significantly increased spending. A gradualIt is a roadblock to transformation and a increase in Air Force spending back to asink-hole for defense dollars. $110 billion to $115 billion level is required to increase service personnel strength; build The reconstitution of the stateside Air new units, especially the composite wingsForce as a large-scale, warfighting force will required to perform the “air constabularycomplicate the service’s plans to reconfigure missions” such as no-fly zones; add theitself for the purposes of expeditionary support capabilities necessary tooperations. But the proliferation of overseas complement the fleet of tactical aircraft;bases should reduce many, if not all, of the reinvest in space capabilities and begin theburdens of rotational contingency opera- process of transformation.tions. Because of its inherent mobility andflexibility, the Air Force will be the first The F-22 Raptor program should beU.S. military force to arrive in a theater continued to procure three wings’ worth ofduring times of crisis; as such, the Air Force aircraft and to develop and buy themust retain its ability to deploy and sustain munitions necessary to increase the F-22’ssufficient numbers of aircraft to deter wars ability to perform strike missions; althoughand shape any conflict in its earliest stages. the plane has limited bomb-carryingIndeed, it is the Air Force, along with the 37
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurycapacity, improved munitions can extend its procuring sufficient “attrition” F-15s and F-utility in the strike role. The need for 16s and proceeding with the F-22 – liesstrategic lift has grown exponentially primarily in creating the varied supportthroughout the post-Cold-War era, both in capabilities that will complement the fighterterms of volume of lift and for numbers of fleet.strategic lift platforms; it may be that therequirement for strategic airlift now exceeds In the wake of the Kosovo air operation,the requirement in the early 1990s when the the Air Force should again reconsider theC-17 program was scaled back from a issue of strategic bombers. Both theplanned 210 aircraft to the current plan for successes and limitations of B-2 operationsjust 120. The C-17’s ability to land on short during “Allied Force” suggest that the utilityairfields makes it both a strategic and of long-range strike aircraft has beentactical airlifter. Or rather, it is the first undervalued, not only in major theater warsairlifter to be able to allow for strategic but in constabulary and punitive operations.deployment direct to an austere theater, as in Whether this mandates opening up the B-2Kosovo. production line again or in accelerating plans to build a new bomber – even an unmanned strategic bomber – is beyond the level of analysis possible in this study. At the same time, it is unlikely that the current bomber fleet – mostly B-1Bs with a shrinking and aging fleet of B-52s and the few B-2s that will be available for conventional-force operations – is best suited to meet these new requirements. To move toward the goal of becoming a force with truly global reach – and sustainedThe Joint Strike Fighter, with limited global reach – the Air Force must rebuild itscapabilities and significant technical fleet of tanker aircraft. Sustaining a large-risk, is a roadblock to future scale air campaign, whatever the ability oftransformation and a sink-hole for strategic-range bombers, must ultimatelyneeded defense funds. rely upon theater-range tactical aircraft. As amply demonstrated over Kosovo, the Likewise, the formal requirements for ability to provide tanker support can oftenAWACS, JSTARS, “Rivet Joint” and other be the limiting factor to such large-scaleelectronic support and combat aircraft were operations. The Air Force’s current plan, toset during the Cold War or before the nature eventually operate a tanker fleet with 75-of the current era was clear. These aircraft year-old planes, is not consistent with thewere designed to operate in conjunction with creation of a global-reach force.large numbers of fighter aircraft, yet todaythey operate with very small formations in Finally, the Air Force should use someno-fly zone, or even virtually alone in of its increased budget and the savings fromcounter-drug intelligence gathering the cancellation of the Joint Strike Fighteroperations. As with the C-17, it is likely program to accelerate the process ofthat a genuine calculation of current transformation within the service, to includerequirements might result in a larger fleet of developing new space capabilities. Thesuch aircraft than was considered during the ability to have access to, operate in, andlate Cold War. In sum, the process of dominate the aerospace environment hasrebuilding today’s Air Force – apart from become the key to military success in modern, high-technology warfare. Indeed, 38
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centuryas will be discussed below, space dominance at-sea forces during the defense drawdownmay become so essential to the preservation of the past decade. As H. Lee Buchanan, theof American military preeminence that it Navy’s top procurement official, recentlymay require a separate service. How well admitted, “After the buildup of the 1980s, atthe Air Force rises to the many challenges it the end of the Cold War we literally stoppedfaces – even should it receive increased modernizing in order to fund near-termbudgets – will go far toward determining readinesswhether U.S. military forces retain the [and]…our The Navy mustcombat edge they now enjoy. procurement begin to reduce its accounts heavy dependenceNew Course for the Navy plummeted by 70 percent. on carrier The result has operations. The end of the Cold War leaves the U.S. been an agingNavy in a position of unchallenged force structure with little modernizationsupremacy on the high seas, a dominance investment.” According to recently retiredsurpassing that even of the British Navy in Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Jaythe 19th and early parts of the 20th century. Johnson, the Navy is in danger of slippingWith the remains of the Soviet fleet now below a fleet of 300 ships, a level that wouldlargely rusting in port, the open oceans are create “unacceptable risk” in executing theAmerica’s, and the lines of communication missions called for by the national militaryopen from the coasts of the United States to strategy. Unfortunately, he added, “TheEurope, the Persian Gulf and East Asia. Yet current level of shipbuilding is insufficientthis very success calls the need for the cur- to preserve even that level of fleet in therent force structure into question. Further, coming decades.”the advance of precision-strike technologymay mean that naval surface combatants, As a consequence, the Navy isand especially the large-deck aircraft attempting to conduct a full range ofcarriers that are the Navy’s capital ships, presence missions while employing themay not survive in the high-technology wars combat forces developed during the laterof the coming decades. Finally, the nature years of the Cold War. The Navy mustand pattern of Navy presence missions may embark upon a complex process ofbe out of synch with emerging strategic realignment and reconfiguration. A decaderealities. In sum, though it stands without of increased operations and reducedpeer today, the Navy faces major challenges investment has worn down the fleets thatto its traditional and, in the past, highly won the Cold War. The demands of newsuccessful methods of operation. missions require new methods and patterns of operations, with an increasing emphasis As with the Army, the Navy’s ability to on East Asia. To meet the strategic need foraddress these challenges has been addition- naval power today, the Navy should beally compromised by the high pace of realigned and reconfigured along these lines:current operations. As noted in the firstsection of this report, the Navy has disruptedthe traditional balance between duty at sea • Reflecting the gradual shift in theand ashore, stressing its sailors and focus of American strategic concernscomplicating training cycles. Units ashore toward East Asia, a majority of theno longer have the personnel, equipment, or U.S. fleet, including two thirds of allopportunities to train; thus, when they go to carrier battle groups, should besea, they go at lower levels of readiness than concentrated in the Pacific. A new,in the past. Modernization has been another permanent forward base should bebill-payer for maintaining the readiness of established in Southeast Asia. 39
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century• The Navy must begin to transition not immediately addressed, will reach crisis away from its heavy dependence on proportions in the next decade. carrier operations, reducing its fleet from 12 to nine carriers over the next Thus, like the other services, the Navy is six years. A moratorium on carrier increasingly ill prepared for missions today construction should be imposed after and tomorrow. For the past several years, the completion of the CVN-77, Adm. Johnson has admitted the Navy “was allowing the Navy to retain a nine- never sized to do two [major theater wars]” carrier force through 2025. Design – meaning that, after the defense drawdown, and research on a future CVX carrier the Navy is too small to meet the require- should continue, but should aim at a ments of the current national military radical design change to accom- strategy. According to Johnson: “The QDR modate an air wing based primarily concluded that a fleet of slightly more than on unmanned aerial vehicles. The 300 ships was sufficient for near term Navy should complete the F/A-18E/F requirements and was within an acceptable program, refurbish and modernize its level of risk. Three years of high tempo support aircraft, consider the operations since then, however, suggest that suitability of a carrier-capable version this size fleet will be inadequate to sustain of the Air Force’s F-22, but keep the the current level of operations for the long Joint Strike Fighter program in term.” research and development until the implications of the revolution in Even as the Navy has shrunk to a little military affairs for naval warfare are more than half its Cold-War size, the pace of understood better. operations has grown so rapidly that the Navy is experiencing readiness problems• To offset the reduced role of carriers, and personnel shortages. These problems the Navy should slightly increase its are so grave that forward-deployed naval fleets of current-generation surface forces, the carrier battle groups that are combatants and submarines for currently the core of the Navy’s presence improved strike capabilities in littoral mission, now put to sea with significant waters and to conduct an increasing personnel problems. When the USS Lincoln proportion of naval presence missions carrier battle group fired Tomahawk cruise with surface action groups. missiles at terrorist camps in Afghanistan Additional investments in counter- and suspected chemical weapons facilities in mine warfare are needed, as well. Sudan, it did so with 12 percent fewer people in the battle group than on theState of the Navy Today previous deployment. Similarly, during the February 1998 confrontation with Iraq, the The first step in maintaining American Navy sent three carriers to the Persian Gulf.naval preeminence must be to restore the The USS George Washington deployed thehealth of the current fleet as rapidly as Gulf with only 4,600 sailors, almost 1,000possible. Though the Navy’s deployments fewer than its previous cruise there twotoday have not changed as profoundly as years earlier. The carrier USShave those of the Army or Air Force – the Independence, dispatched on short noticesea services have long manned, equipped from its permanent home in Japan, sailedand trained themselves for the rigors of long with only 4,200 sailors and needed andeployments at sea – the number of these emergency influx of about 80 sailors just soduties has increased as the Navy has been it could be rated fit for combat. The USSreduced. The Navy also faces a shipbuilding Nimitz, already in the Middle East, was 400and larger modernization problem that, if sailors shy of its previous cruise. The Navy 40
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centuryalso had to issue two urgent calls for carrier battle groups by trimming thevolunteer sailors in port back home. number of escorts. Most ominously, the Navy’s ability to surge large fleets in This is a worrisome trend. Today more wartime – the requirement to meet the two-than ever, U.S. Navy operations center war standard – is declining. As Adm.around the carrier battle group. Indeed, the Johnson told the Congress:ability to conduct additional operations oreven training independent from battle group [N]early every Major Theater Waroperations is increasingly difficult. But the scenario would require the rapidprocess of piecing together the elements of a deployment of forces from [the Unitedbattle group – the carrier itself, its air wing, States]. Because of the increasinglyits surface escorts, its submarines, and its deep bathtub in our [interdeployment training cycle] readiness posture, theseaccompanying Marine Amphibious Ready follow-on forcesGroup – is also becoming a substantial most likely willchallenge. not be at the desired levels of Bringing a carrier battle group to the proficiencyhigh states of readiness demanded by quickly enough.deployments to sea is a complex and Concern over therigorous task, involving tens of thousands of readiness of non-personnel over an 18-month period. deployed forcesFormally known as the “interdeployment was a contributingtraining cycle” and more often called the Johnson factor to thereadiness “bathtub,” this period is the key to Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staffreadiness at sea. Equipment must be recently changing his overall riskoverhauled and maintained, personnel assessment of a two[-war] scenario toassigned and reassigned, and training moderate to high.accomplished from individual skills upthrough complex battle group operations. This assessment has promptedShortfalls and cutbacks felt in the inter- Johnson’s successor, Adm. Vernon Clark,deployment cycle result in diminished the former commander of the Atlantic Fleetreadiness at sea. And finally and vitally who was confirmed as CNO in June, toimportant to the health of an all-volunteer outline a major reallocation of resources toforce – sailors must reestablish the bonds increase the readiness of carrier battleand ties with their families that allow them groups – although only to the “C-2” ratingto concentrate on their duties while at sea. level, still below the highest standard. “To me, readiness is a top priority,” said Clark in Although Navy leaders have recently his confirmation testimony. “It simplyfocused on the cutbacks in their inter- means taking care of the Navy that thedeployment training cycle, it is clear that American people have already invested in.”postponed maintenance and training ishaving an increasing effect on the readiness But while Clark is correct about theof forces at sea. As a result, naval task Navy’s increasing troubles maintaining itsforces are compelled to complete their current readiness, an even larger problemtraining while they are deployed, rather than looms just over the horizon. The Navy’sbeforehand. And with fully 52 percent of its “procurement holiday” of the past decadeships afloat, including training, and 33 has left the service facing a serious problempercent actually deployed at sea – compared of block obsolescence in the next 10 years.to historical norms of 42 percent at sea and Unless current trends are reversed, the Navy21 percent deployed, Navy leaders are will be too small to meet its worldwidecontemplating a reduction in the size of commitments. Both in its major ship and 41
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centuryaircraft programs, the Navy has been While buying too many cheappurchasing too few systems to sustain even auxiliaries, the administration is buying toothe reduced, post-Cold War fleet called for few combatants, as the state of thein the Quadrennial Defense Review. submarine force indicates. In 1997, the Navy’s fleet of 72 attack boats was too small As a result of the significant expansion to meet its operational requirements, yet, atof the Navy to nearly 600 ships during the the same time, the QDR called for a furtherReagan years and the following drawdown reduction of the attack submarine force to 50of the 1990s, today’s Navy of just over 300 boats. Since then, these additionalships is made up of relatively new ships, and reductions in the submarine force havethus the low shipbuilding rates of the past exacerbated the problem. As the Navy’sdecade have not yet had a dramatic effect on director of submarine programs, Adm.the fleet. Assuming the traditional “ship- Malcolm Fages told the Senate last year,life” of about 30 “We have transitioned from a requirements-to 35 years, The Navy has driven force to an asset-limited forcemaintaining a built up a structure. Today, although we have 58300-ship Navy ‘modernization submarines in the force, we have too fewrequires the submarines to accomplish all assigned deficit’ – ofpurchase of about missions.”eight to 10 ships surface ships,per year. The submarines and Nor is it likely that the Navy will be ableClinton Admini- aircraft – that to stop the hemorrhaging of its attackstration’s 2001 submarine fleet. For the period from 1990defense budget will soon through 2005, the Navy will have purchasedrequest includes a approach $100 just 10 new attack submarines, according torequest for eight billion. current plans. But the replacement rate forships, the first even a 50-sub fleet would have requiredtime in several years that the number is that procurement of 23 to 27 boats during thathigh. And the administration’s long-term time period. In sum, the Navy has aplan would purchase 39 ships over 5 years, submarine-building “deficit” of 13 to 17still below the required replacement rate, but boats, even to maintain a fleet that is tooan improvement over recent Navy budgets. small to meet operational and strategic needs. According to the administration’s However, there is less to this apparent budget request, the Navy plans to build noimprovement than meets the eye. The slight more than one new attack submarine perincrease in the shipbuilding rate is achieved year. Assuming the 30-year service life forby purchasing less expensive auxiliary cargo nuclear attack submarines, the Americanships, which typically cost $300 to $400 submarine fleet would slip to 24 boats bymillion, compared to $1 billion for an attack 2025.submarine or Arleigh Burke-class Aegisdestroyer, or $6 billion for an aircraft The Navy’s fleet of surface combatantscarrier. According to a Congressional faces much the same dilemma as does theResearch Service analysis, the submarine force: it is too small to meet itsadministration plan would buy unneeded current missions and, as seaborne missilecargo ships, “procured at a rate in excess of defense systems are developed, the surfacethe steady-state replacement for Navy fleet faces substantial new missions forauxiliaries.” The replacement rate for which it is now unprepared. For theseauxiliaries is approximately 1.5 per year; the reasons, the Navy has prepared a new report,administration’s request includes one in entitled the Surface Combatant Force Level2001, three each in 2002 and 2003, and two Study, arguing that the true requirement foreach in 2004 and 2005. surface combatants is 138 warships, 42
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurycompared to the 116 called for under the aircraft and improving its electronicQuadrennial Defense Review. By systems. No new electronic warfare aircraftcomparison, the Navy had 203 surface is in the program of any service.combatants in 1990 and the BushAdministration’s “Base Force” plan called As a result of a decade-long procure-for a surface fleet of 141 ships. ment holiday, a Navy already too small to meet many of its current missions is heading As of last year, Navy shipbuilding had a for a modernization crisis; indeed, it alreadycurrent “deficit” of approximately 26 ships, may have built up a “modernization deficit”even before the requirements of new mis- – of surface ships, submarines, and aircraft,sions such as ballistic missile are calculated. that will soon approach $100 billion – evenTo maintain a 300-ship fleet, the Navy must as the Navy is asked to take on additionalmaintain a ship procurement rate of about new missions such as ballistic missile8.6 ships per year. Yet from 1993 to 2005, defense. Higher operations tempos, person-according to administration plans, the Navy nel and training problems and spare partswill have bought 85 ships, or about 6.5 ships shortfalls have reduced Navy readiness. Byper year. Steady-state rates would have any measure, today’s Navy is unable to meetrequired the purchase of 111 ships, accor- the increasing number of missions it facesding to the Congressional Research Service currently, let alone prepare itself for a trans-analysis. Once the large number of ships formed paradigm of future naval warfare.bought during the 1980s begins to reach theend of its service life, the Navy will begin to New Deployment Patternsshrink rapidly, and maintaining a fleet above250 ships will be difficult to do. Revitalizing the Navy will require more than improved readiness and recapitaliza- As with ships and submarines, the tion, however. The Navy’s structure andNavy’s aircraft fleet is living off the pattern of operations must be reconsideredpurchases made during the buildup of the in light of new strategic realities as well. InReagan years. The average age of naval general terms, this should reflect anaircraft is 16.5 years and increasing. While increased emphasis on operations in thethe Navy’s F-14 and F-18 fighters are being western Pacific and a decreased emphasis onupgraded, the aging of the fleet is most aircraft carriers.telling on support aircraft. The Navy’s planto refurbish the P-3C submarine-hunting As discussed above, the focus ofplane will extend the Orion’s life to 50 American security strategy for the comingyears; the fleet average now is 21 years. century is likely to shift to East Asia. ThisThe E-2 Hawkeye, the Navy’s airborne early reflects the success of American strategy inwarning and command and control plane, the 20th century, and particularly the successwas first produced in the 1960s. The S-3B of the NATO alliance through the Cold War,Viking is another aircraft essential to many which has created what appears to be aaspects of carrier operations; it is 23 years generally stable and enduring peace inold and no longer in production. And the Europe. The pressing new problem ofEA-6B Prowler is now the only electronic European security – instability in South-warfare aircraft flown by any of the services, eastern Europe – will be best addressed byand is now considered a national asset, not the continued stability operations in themerely a Navy platform. Operation Allied Balkans by U.S. and NATO ground forcesForce employed approximately 60 of the 90 supported by land-based air forces.operational EA-6Bs then in the fleet; current Likewise, the new opportunity for greaterNavy plans are to refurbish the entire 123 European stability offered by further NATOProwler airframes that still exist, inserting a expansion will make demands first of all onnew center wing section on this 1960s-era 43
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centuryground and land-based air forces. As the As stressed several times above, the UnitedAmerican security perimeter in Europe is States should seek to establish – orremoved eastward, this pattern will endure, reestablish – a more robust naval presence inalthough naval forces will play an important Southeast Asia, marked by a long-term,role in the Baltic Sea, eastern Mediterranean semi-permanent home port in the region,and Black Sea, and will continue to support perhaps in the Philip-pines, Australia, orU.S. and NATO operations ashore. both. Over the next decade, this presence should become roughly equivalent to the Also, while it is naval forces stationed in Japan (17 ships likely that the based around the Kitty Hawk carrier battle Middle East and group and Belleau Wood Marine amphibious Persian Gulf will ready group). Optimally, these forward- remain an area of deployed forces, both in Japan and turmoil and ultimately in Southeast Asia, should be instability, the increased with additional surface increased combatants. In effect, one of the carrier presence of battle groups now based on the West Coast American ground of the United States should be shifted into forces and land- the East Asian theater. based air forces in the region mark a Rotational naval forces form the bulk of notable shift from the U.S. Navy; as indicated above, the size the 1980s, when of the current fleet is dictated by the naval forces presence requirements of the regionalTomahawk cruise carried the commanders-in-chief as determined during overwhelming the 1997 Quadrennial Defense Review.missiles have been burden of U.S. And, the Navy and Department of Defensethe Navy weapon of military presence have defined presence primarily in terms ofchoice in recent in the region. aircraft carrier battle groups. The currentstrike operations. Although the need to keep approximately three carriers Navy will remain deployed equates to an overall force an important partner in Gulf and regional structure of eleven carriers (plus one reserve operations, the load can now be shared more carrier for training). In truth, the structure- equitably with other services. And, to-deployed forces ratio is actually higher, according to the force posture described in for the Navy always counts its Japan-based the preceding chapter, future American forces as “deployed,” even when not at sea. policy should seek to augment the forces Further, because of transit times and other already in the region or nearby. However, factors, the ratio for carriers deployed to the since current U.S. Navy force structure, and Persian Gulf is about five to one. particularly its carrier battle-group structure, is driven by the current requirements for Although the combination of carriers Gulf operations, the reduced emphasis of and Marine amphibious groups offer a naval forces in the Gulf will have an effect unique and highly capable set of options for on overall Navy structure. commanders, it is far from certain that the Thus, the emphasis of U.S. Navy Navy’s one-size-fits all approach is operations should shift increasingly toward appropriate to every contingency or to every East Asia. Not only is this the theater of engagement mission now assumed by U.S. rising importance in overall American forces. First of all, the need for carriers in strategy and for preserving American peacetime, “show-the-flag” missions should preeminence, it is the theater in which naval be reevaluated and reduced. The Navy is forces will make the greatest contribution. right to assert, as quoted above, that “being 44
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century‘on-scene’ matters” to reassure America’s certain targets or were not employed againstallies and intimidate potential adversaries. well-defended targets. These are nowBut where American strategic interests are missions handled almost exclusively bywell understood and long-standing, stealthy aircraft or cruise missiles.especially in Europe and in the Persian Gulf Likewise, during Operation Allied Force,– or in Korea – the ability to position forces Navy planes played a reinforcing role. And,ashore offsets the need for naval presence. of course, neither Navy nor Marine units have played a significant role in peacekeeping duties in Bosnia or Kosovo. The one recent operation where naval forces, and carrier forces in particular, did play the leading role is also suggestive of the Navy’s future: the dispatching of two carrier battle groups to the waters off Taiwan during the 1996 Chinese “missile blockade.” Several factors are worth noting. First, the crisis occurred in East Asia, in the westernWhile carrier aviation still has a large Pacific Ocean. Thus, the Navy wasrole to play in naval operations, that uniquely positioned and postured to respond.role is becoming relatively less Not only did the Seventh Fleet make it first on the scene, but deploying and sustainingimportant. ground forces or land-based aircraft to the region would have been difficult. Second, More importantly, the role of carriers in the potential enemy was China. Althoughwar is certainly changing. While carrier Pentagon thinking about major theater waraviation still has a large role to play in naval in East Asia has centered on Korea – whereoperations, that role is becoming relatively again land and land-based air forces wouldless important. A review of post-Cold War likely play the leading role – the Taiwanoperations conducted by the American crisis was perhaps more indicative of themilitary reveals one salient factor: carriers longer-range future. A third question has nohave almost always played a secondary role. easy answer: what, indeed, would theseOperation Just Cause in Panama was almost carrier battle groups have been able to do inexclusively an Army and Air Force the event of escalation or the outbreak ofoperation. The Gulf War, by far the largest hostilities? Had the Chinese actuallyoperation in the last decade, involved targeted missiles at Taiwan, it is doubtfulsignificant elements of all services, but the that the Aegis air-defense systems aboardair campaign was primarily an Air Force the cruisers and destroyers in the battleshow and the central role in the ground war groups could have provided an effectivewas played by Army units. The conduct of defense. Punitive strikes against Chinesepost-war no-fly zones has frequently forces by carrier aircraft, or cruise missileinvolved Navy aircraft, but their role has strikes, might have been a second option,been to lighten the burden on the Air Force but a problematic option. And, as in recentunits that have flown the majority of sorties strike operations elsewhere, initial attacksin these operations. Naval forces also have certainly would have employed cruiseparticipated in the periodic strikes against missiles exclusively, or perhaps cruiseIraq, but even during the largest of these, missiles and stealthy, land-based aircraft.Operation Desert Fox in December 1998,Navy aircraft did not have range to reach 45
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century Thus, while naval presence, including missile defenses, might require a surfacecarrier presence, in the western Pacific combatant fleet of 150 vessels.should be increased, the Navy should beginto conduct many of its presence missions The Navy’s force of attack submarineswith other kinds of battle groups based also should be expanded. While many ofaround cruisers, destroyers and other surface the true submarine requirements likecombatants as well as submarines. Indeed, intelligence-gathering missions and asthe Navy needs cruise-missile platforms were not consideredto better The Navy’s fully during the QDR – and it will take someunderstand the time to understand how submarine needsrequirement to surface fleet is would change to make up for changes in thehave substantial too small to meet carrier force – by any reckoning the 50-boatnumbers of current fleet now planned is far too small.cruise-missile However, as is the case with surfaceplatforms at sea requirements, combatants, the need to increase the size ofand in close war plans and the fleet must compete with the need toproximity to future missile introduce new classes of vessels that haveregional hot defense duties. advanced capabilities. It is unclear that thespots, using current and planned generations of attackcarriers and submarines (to say nothing of new ballisticnaval aviation as reinforcing elements. missile submarines) will be flexible enoughMoreover, the reduced need for naval to meet future demands. The Navy shouldaviation in the European theater and in the reassess its submarine requirements notGulf suggests that the carrier elements in the merely in light of current missions but withAtlantic fleet can be reduced. Therefore, in an expansive view of possible futureaddition to the two forward-based carrier missions as well.groups recommended above, the Navyshould retain a further fleet of three active Finally, the reduction in carriers shouldplus one reserve carriers homeported on the not be accompanied by a commensuratewest coast of the United States and a three- reduction in naval air wings. Already, thecarrier Atlantic fleet. Overall, this Navy maintains just 10 air wings, too smallrepresents a reduction of three carriers. a structure for the current carrier fleet, especially considering the rapid aging of the However, the reduction in carriers must Navy’s aircraft. Older fighters like the F-14be offset by an increase in surface com- have taken on new strike missions, and thebatants, submarines and also in support multi-mission F/A-18 is wearing out fasterships to make up for the logistics functions than expected due to higher-than-anticipatedthat the carrier performs for the entire battle rates of use and more stressful uses. Evengroup. As indicated above, the surface fleet should the Navy simply cease to purchaseis already too small to meet current aircraft carriers today, it could maintain arequirements and must be expanded to nine-carrier force until 2025, assuming theaccommodate the requirements for sea- CVN-77, already programmed under currentbased ballistic missile defenses. Further, the defense budgets, was built. A small carrierNavy’s fleet of frigates is likely to be fleet must be maintained at a higher state ofinadequate for the long term, and the need readiness for combat while in port, as shouldfor smaller and simpler ships to respond to Navy air wings.presence and other lesser contingencymissions should be examined by the Navy.To patrol the American security perimeter atsea, including a significant role in theater 46
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New CenturyMarine Corps: requirements for operations in East Asia, including Southeast Asia. In many ways,‘Back to the Future’ this will be a “back to the future” mission for the Corps, recalling the innovative For the better part of a century, the thinking done during the period between theUnited States has maintained the largest two world wars and which established thecomplement of naval infantry of any nation. Marines’ expertise in amphibious landingsThe U.S. Marine Corps, with a three- and operations. Yet it will also require thedivision structure mandated by law and with Corps to shed some of its current capacity –a strength of more than 170,000, is larger such as heavy tanks and artillery – acquiredthan all but a few land armies in the world. during the late Cold War years. It will alsoIts close relationship with the Navy – to say require the Marines to acquire the ability tonothing of its own highly sophisticated air work better with other services, notably theforce – gives the Corps extraordinary Army and Air Force, by improving itsmobility and combat power. Even as it has communications, data links and otherbeen reduced by about 15 percent since the systems needed for sophisticated jointend of the Cold War, the Marine Corps has operations, and of course by more frequentadded new capabilities, notably for special joint exercises. These new missions andoperations and most recently for response to requirements will increase the need forchemical and biological strikes. This Marine modernization, especially inversatility, combined with a punishing acquiring the V-22 “Osprey” tilt-rotordeployment schedule, makes the Marine aircraft, which will give the Corps extendedCorps a valuable tool for maintaining operational range. And, as will be discussedAmerican global influence and military in greater detail in the section onpreeminence; Marines afloat can both transformation, the Marine Corps mustrespond relatively rapidly in times of crisis, begin now to address the likely increasedyet loiter ashore for extended periods of vulnerability of surface ships in futuretime. conflicts. To maintain its unique and valuable role, the Marine Corps should: Yet while this large Marine Corps isuniquely valuable to a world power like the • Be expanded to permit the forwardUnited States, it must be understood that the basing of a second MarineCorps fills but a niche in the overall Expeditionary Unit (MEU) in Eastcapabilities needed for American military Asia. This MEU should be based inpreeminence. The Corps lacks the Southeast Asia along with thesophisticated and sustainable land-power repositioned Navy carrier battlecapabilities of the Army; the high- group as described above.performance, precision-strike capabilities ofthe Air Force; and, absent its partnership • Likewise be increased in strength bywith the Navy, lacks firepower. Restoring about 25,000 to improve the personnelthe health of the Marine Corps will require status of Marine units, especiallynot only purchases of badly needed new nondeployed units undergoingequipment and restoring the strength of the training.Corps to something near 200,000 Marines, itwill also depend on the Corps’ ability tofocus on its core naval infantry mission – a • Be realigned to create lighter unitsmission of renewed importance to American with greater infantry strength andsecurity strategy. better abilities for joint operations, especially including other services’ In particular, the Marine Corps, like the fires in support of Marine operations.Navy, must turn its focus on the The Marine Corps should review its 47
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century unit and force structure to eliminate marginal capabilities.• Accelerate the purchase of V-22 aircraft and the Advanced Amphibious Assault Vehicle to improve ship-to-shore maneuver, and increase tactical mobility and range.The State of the Marine Corps Like its sister sea service, the MarineCorps is suffering from more missions than The V-22 Osprey will increase theit can handle and a shortage of resources. speed and range with which MarinesAlthough Corps commandants have tended can deploy.to emphasize Marine modernizationproblems, the training and readiness of units and electronics. Even a relatively modernthat are not actually deployed have also piece of Marine equipment, the Lightplummeted. The Marines’ ability to field Armored Vehicle, is feeling the effect. Inthe large force that contributed greatly to the 1995, the Marines began an “Inspect, RepairGulf War land campaign is increasingly in Only as Necessary” program on the Lightdoubt. Of all the service chiefs of staff, Armored Vehicle, and have experienced arecently retired Marine Commandant Gen. 25 percent rise in the cost per vehicle and aCharles Krulak was the first to publicly 46 percent rise in the number of vehiclesadmit that his service was not capable of requiring the repairs. For some Marineexecuting the missions called for in the units, the biggest challenge is thenational military strategy. availability of parts, even in such a time of repair and recovery. At Camp Lejuene, Like the Navy, the Marine Corps has North Carolina, maintenance officers andpaid the price for rotational readiness in NCOs make near-daily trips to nearby Fortterms of on-shore training, modernization Bragg to get parts for inoperable vehiclesand quality of life. Marine Corps leaders such as the battalion’s High Mobilitystress that much of the problem stems from Multipurpose Wheeled Vehiclesthe age of the Marines’ equipment: “Our (HMMWV). In part because the Marinesproblems today are caused by the fact that have the oldest version of the HMMWV, nowe are, and have been, plowing scarce longer made for the Army, bartering withresources – Marines, money, material – into the 82nd Airborne is the most commonour old equipment and weapon systems in answer for procuring a needed part.an attempt to keep them operational,”Krulak explained to Congress shortly before But although the Marine Corps’ primaryretiring. concern is again equipment, the service is hardly immune to the personnel and training Much Marine equipment is serving far problems plaguing the other services. Facedbeyond its programmed service life. And not only with a demanding schedule ofalthough the Marine Corps has invested traditional six-month sea deployments butheavily in programs to extend the life of with an increasing load of unanticipatedthese systems, equipment availability rates duties, the interdeployment “bathtub ofare falling throughout the service. Marine unreadiness” has deepened and the climb outequipment always wears out rapidly, due to has grown steeper. Like the Navy, thethe corrosive effects of salt water on metal Marine Corps has had to curtail its on-shore 48
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century training, especially in the rudiments that are size of the Navy again – Navy procurement the building blocks of unit readiness. Even budgets averaged $43 billion. then, it may be required to deploy smaller To realign and reconfigure the Navy as elements to assist other units in training or described above, Department of the Navy participate in exercises. Often, Marine units spending overall should be increased to will be forced to send between $100 billion and $110 billion. ThisNavy under-strength units for slightly exceeds the levels of spending major live-fire and anticipated by the final BushDepartment maneuver exercises Administration, and is necessary tospending that in times past were accelerate ship- and submarine-buildingshould be the keys to deployed efforts. After several years, this will beincreased to readiness. Moreover, partially offset by the moratorium in aircraft large Marine units lack carrier construction and by holding the Jointbetween $100 the infantry punch they Strike Fighter program in research andand $110 had in the past. Marine development. Yet maintaining a Navybillion divisions have fewer capable of dominating the open oceans,annually. rifleman than in past; providing effective striking power to joint as the overall strength operations ashore and transforming itself for of the Marine Corps future naval warfare – in short, a Navy able has been cut from 197,000 to the 172,000 as to preserve U.S. maritime preeminence – specified in the Quadrennial Defense will require much more than marginal Review, the number of infantry battalions in increases in Navy budgets. the division was cut from 11 to nine; authorized personnel in the division went from 19,161 to 15,816.Navy and Marine Corps Budgets President Clinton’s 2001 budget requestincluded $91.7 billion for the Department ofthe Navy. (This figure includes funding forthe Navy and Marine Corps.) This is anincrease from the $87.2 billion approved byCongress for 2000, a sharp reduction fromthe Navy’s $107 billion budget in 1992, thefirst true post-Cold-War budget. Equally dramatic is the reduction inNavy Department procurement budgets. For2000, the administration requested justunder $22 billion in total Navy and MarineCorps procurement; from 1994 through1997, at the peak of the “procurementholiday,” department procurement budgetsaveraged just $17 billion. By contrast,during the Bush years, Navy procurementaveraged $35 billion; during the years of theReagan buildup – arguably a relevantcomparison, given the need to expand the 49
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century V CREATING TOMORROW’S DOMINANT FORCE To preserve American military Department was in the midst of the Reaganpreeminence in the coming decades, the buildup which was primarily an effort toDepartment of Defense must move more expand existing forces and field traditionalaggressively to experiment with new weapons systems, research spendingtechnologies and operational concepts, and represented 20 percent of total Pentagonseek to exploit the emerging revolution in budgets. By contrast, today’s research andmilitary affairs. Information technologies, development accounts total only 8 percent ofin particular, are becoming more prevalent defense spending. And even this reducedand significant components of modern total is primarily for upgrades of currentmilitary systems. These information tech- weapons. Without increased spending onnologies are having the same kind of trans- basic research and development the Unitedforming effects on military affairs as they States will be unable to exploit the RMAare having in the larger world. The effects and preserve its technological edge on futureof this military transformation will have battlefields.profound implications for how wars arefought, what kinds of weapons will Any serious effort at transformationdominate the battlefield and, inevitably, must occur within the larger framework ofwhich nations enjoy military preeminence. U.S. national security strategy, military missions and defense budgets. The United The United States enjoys every prospect States cannotof leading this transformation. Indeed, it simply declare a The effects ofwas the improvements in capabilities “strategic pause” the RMA willacquired during the American defense build- whileup of the 1980s that hinted at and then experimenting have profoundconfirmed, during Operation Desert Storm, with new implications forthat a revolution in military affairs was at technologies and how wars arehand. At the same time, the process of operational fought, whatmilitary transformation will present concepts. Noropportunities for America’s adversaries to can it choose to weaponsdevelop new capabilities that in turn will pursue a dominate, andcreate new challenges for U.S. military transformation which nationspreeminence. strategy that enjoy military would decouple Moreover, the Pentagon, constrained by American and preeminence.limited budgets and pressing current allied interests.missions, has seen funding for experi- A transformation strategy that solelymentation and transformation crowded out pursued capabilities for projecting forcein recent years. Spending on military from the United States, for example, andresearch and development has been reduced sacrificed forward basing and presence,dramatically over the past decade. Indeed, would be at odds with larger Americanduring the mid-1980’s, when the Defense 50
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurypolicy goals and would trouble American “international commons” be a key toallies. world power in the future. An America incapable of protecting its Further, the process of transformation, interests or that of its allies in spaceeven if it brings revolutionary change, is or the “infosphere” will find itlikely to be a long one, absent some difficult to exert global politicalcatastrophic and catalyzing event – like a leadership.new Pearl Harbor. Domestic politics andindustrial policy will shape the pace and • Pursuing a two-stage strategy for ofcontent of transformation as much as the transforming conventional forces. Inrequirements of current missions. A exploiting the “revolution in militarydecision to suspend or terminate aircraft affairs,” the Pentagon must be drivencarrier production, as recommended by this by the enduring missions for U.S.report and as justified by the clear direction forces. This process will have twoof military technology, will cause great stages: transition, featuring a mix ofupheaval. Likewise, systems entering current and new systems; and trueproduction today – the F-22 fighter, for transformation, featuring newexample – will be in service inventories for systems, organizations anddecades to come. Wise management of this operational concepts. This processprocess will consist in large measure of must take a competitive approach,figuring out the right moments to halt with services and joint-serviceproduction of current-paradigm weapons operations competing for new rolesand shift to radically new designs. The and missions. Any successful processexpense associated with some programs can of transformation must be linked tomake them roadblocks to the larger process the services, which are the institutionsof transformation – the Joint Strike Fighter within the Defense Department withprogram, at a total of approximately $200 the ability and the responsibility forbillion, seems an unwise investment. Thus, linking budgets and resources tothis report advocates a two-stage process of specific missions.change – transition and transformation –over the coming decades. Missile Defenses In general, to maintain Americanmilitary preeminence that is consistent with Ever since the Persian Gulf War ofthe requirements of a strategy of American 1991, when an Iraqi Scud missile hit a Saudiglobal leadership, tomorrow’s U.S. armed warehouse in which American soldiers wereforces must meet three new missions: sleeping, causing the largest single number of casualties in the war; when Israeli and• Global missile defenses. A network Saudi citizens donned gas masks in nightly against limited strikes, capable of terror of Scud attacks; and when the great protecting the United States, its allies “Scud Hunt” proved to be an elusive game and forward-deployed forces, must be that absorbed a huge proportion of U.S. constructed. This must be a layered aircraft, the value of the ballistic missile has system of land, sea, air and space- been clear to America’s adversaries. When based components. their missiles are tipped with warheads carrying nuclear, biological, or chemical weapons, even weak regional powers have a• Control of space and cyberspace. credible deterrent, regardless of the balance Much as control of the high seas – and of conventional forces. That is why, the protection of international according to the CIA, a number of regimes commerce – defined global powers in deeply hostile to America – North Korea, the past, so will control of the new 51
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New CenturyIraq, Iran, Libya and Syria – “already have requirements to impose sanctions onor are developing ballistic missiles” that Beijing.could threaten U.S allies and forces abroad.And one, North Korea, is on the verge of At the same time, the administration’sdeploying missiles that can hit the American devotion to the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missilehomeland. Such capabilities pose a grave (ABM) Treaty with the Soviet Union haschallenge to the American peace and the frustrated development of useful ballisticmilitary power that preserves that peace. missile defenses. This is reflected in deep budget cuts – planned spending on missile The ability to defenses for the late 1990s has been more control this emerg- than halved, halting work on space-based ing threat through interceptors, cutting funds for a national traditional nonpro- missile defense system by 80 percent and liferation treaties theater defenses by 30 percent. Further, the is limited when administration has cut funding just at the the geopolitical crucial moments when individual programs and strategic begin to show promise. Only upgrades of advantages of such currently existing systems like the Patriot weapons are so missile – originally designed primarily for apparent and so air defense against jet fighters, not missile readily acquired. defense – have proceeded generally on The Clinton course. Administration’s diplomacy, threats Most damaging of all was the decision and pleadings did in 1993 to terminate the “Brilliant Pebbles” nothing to prevent project. This legacy of the original Reagan- first India and era “Star Wars” effort had matured to the shortly thereafter point where it was becoming feasible to Pakistan from develop a space-based interceptor capable ofTo increase their demonstrating destroying ballistic missiles in the early or their nuclear middle portion of their flight – far preferableeffectiveness, capabilities. Nor than attempting to hit individual warheadsground-based have formal surrounded by clusters of decoys on theirinterceptors like the international final course toward their targets. But since aArmy’s Theater agreements such space-based system would violate the ABMHigh-Altitude Area as the 1987 Treaty, the administration killed theDefense System Missile “Brilliant Pebbles” program, choosingmust be networked Technology instead to proceed with a ground-basedto space-based Control Regime interceptor and radar system – one that willsystems. done much to stem be costly without being especially effective. missile proliferation, even when backed by U.S. While there is an argument to be made sanctions; in the final analysis, the for “terminal” ground-based interceptors as administration has preferred to subordinate an element in a larger architecture of missile its nonproliferation policy to larger regional defenses, it deserves the lowest rather than and country-specific goals. Thus, President the first priority. The first element in any Clinton lamented in June 1998 that he found missile defense network should be a galaxy sanctions legislation so inflexible that he of surveillance satellites with sensors was forced to “fudge” the intelligence capable of acquiring enemy ballistic missiles evidence on China’s transfer of ballistic immediately upon launch. Once a missile is missiles to Pakistan to avoid the legal tracked and targeted, this information needs 52
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centuryto be instantly disseminated through a modified Scuds did during the Gulf War.world-wide command-and-control system, And finally, point defenses, even when theyincluding direct links to interceptors. To successfully intercept an incoming missile,address the special problems of theater- may not offset the effects against weaponsrange ballistic missiles, theater-level of mass destruction.defenses should be layered as well. Inaddition to space-based systems, these Thus the requirement for upper-tier,theater systems should include both land- theater-wide defenses like the Army’sand sea-based interceptors, to allow for Theater High Altitude Area Defensedeployment to trouble spots to reinforce (THAAD) and the Navy Theater-Widetheater systems already in place or to cover systems. Though housed in a Patriot-likegaps where no defenses exist. In addition, launcher, THAAD is an entirely new systemthey should be “two-tiered,” providing designed to intercept medium-range ballisticclose-in “point defense” of valuable targets missiles earlier in their flight, in the so-and forces as well as upper-level, “theater- called “mid-course.” The Navy Theater-wide” coverage. Wide system is based upon the Aegis system, with an upgraded radar and higher- Current programs could provide the velocity – though intentionally slowed downnecessary density for a layered approach to to meet administration concerns overtheater missile defense, although funding for violating the ABM Treaty – version of theeach component has been inadequate, Standard missile. The THAAD system hasespecially for enjoyed recent test success, but developmentthe upper-tier, The Clinton of the Navy Theater-Wide system has beensea based Administration’s hampered by lack of funds. Similarly, aeffort, known adherence to the fifth component of a theater-wide networkas the Navy of ballistic missile defenses, the Air Force’sTheater-Wide 1972 ABM airborne laser project, has suffered fromprogram. Treaty has insufficient funding. This system, whichPoint defense frustrated mounts a high energy laser in a 747 aircraft,is to be is designed to intercept theater ballisticprovided by development of missiles in their earliest, or “boost” phase,the Patriot useful ballistic when they are most vulnerable.Advanced missile defenses.Capability, To maximize their effectiveness, theseLevel 3, or PAC-3 version of the Patriot air theater-level interceptors should receivedefense missile and by the Navy Area continuous targeting information directlyDefense system, likewise an upgrade of the from a global constellation of satellitescurrent Standard air defense missile and the carrying infrared sensors capable ofAegis radar system. Both systems are on the detecting ballistic missile launches as theyverge of being deployed. happen. The low-earth-orbit tier of the Space-Based Infrared System (SBIRS Low), These lower-tier defenses, though they now under development by the Air Force,will be capable of providing protection will provide continuous observations ofagainst the basic Scuds and Scud variants ballistic missiles in the boost, midcourse andthat comprise the arsenals of most American reentry phases of attack. Current missileadversaries today, are less effective against tracking radars can see objects only abovelonger-range, higher-velocity missiles that the horizon and must be placed in friendlyseveral states have under development. territory; consequently, they are mostMoreover, they will be less effective against effective only in the later phases of amissiles with more complex warheads or ballistic missile’s flight. SBIRS Low,those that break apart, as many Iraqi however, can see a hostile missile earlier in 53
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centuryits trajectory, increasing times for inter- and it is states like Iraq, Iran and Northception and multiplying the effectiveness of Korea who most wish to develop deterrenttheater-range interceptors by cueing their capabilities. Projecting conventionalradars with targeting data. It will also military forces or simply asserting politicalprovide precise launch-point information, influence abroad, particularly in times ofallowing theater forces a better chance to crisis, will be far more complex anddestroy hostile launchers before more constrained when the American homeland ormissiles can be fired. There is also a SBIRS the territory of our allies is subject to attackHigh project, but both SBIRS programs by otherwise weak rogue regimes capable ofhave suffered budget cuts that are to delay cobbling together a miniscule ballistictheir deployments by two years. missile force. Building an effective, robust, layered, global system of missile defenses is But to be most effective, this array a prerequisite for maintaining Americanglobal reconnaissance and targeting preeminence.satellites should be linked to a globalnetwork of space-based interceptors (orspace-based lasers). In fact, it is misleading Space and Cyberspaceto think of such a system as a “national”missile defense system, for it would be a No system of missile defenses can bevital element in theater defenses, protecting fully effective without placing sensors andU.S. allies or expeditionary forces abroad weapons in space. Although this wouldfrom longer-range theater weapons. This is appear to be creating a potential new theaterwhy the Bush Administration’s missile of warfare, in fact space has been militarizeddefense architecture, which is almost for the better part of four decades. Weather,identical to the network described above, communications, navigation andwas called Global Protection Against reconnaissance satellites are increasinglyLimited Strikes (GPALS). By contrast, the essential elements in American militaryClinton Administration’s plan to develop power. Indeed, U.S. armed forces arelimited national missile defenses based upon uniquely dependent upon space. As theMinuteman III missiles fitted with a so- 1996 Joint Strategy Review, a precursor tocalled “exoatmospheric kill vehicle” is the the 1997 Quadrennial Defense Review,most technologically challenging, most concluded, “Space is already inextricablyexpensive, and least effective form of long- linked to military operations on land, on therange ballistic missile defense. Indeed, the sea, and in the air.” The report of theClinton Administration’s differentiation National Defense Panel agreed:between theater and national missile defense “Unrestricted use of space has become asystems is yet another legacy of the ABM major strategic interest of the UnitedTreaty, one that does not fit the current States.”strategic circumstances. Moreover, bydifferentiating between national and theater Given the advantages U.S. armed forcesdefenses, current plans drive a wedge enjoy as a result of this unrestricted use ofbetween the United States and its allies, and space, it is shortsighted to expect potentialrisk “decoupling.” Conversely, American adversaries to refrain from attempting tointerests will diverge from those of our allies offset to disable or offset U.S. spaceif theater defenses can protect our friends capabilities. And with the proliferation ofand forces abroad, but the American people space know-how and related technologyat home remain threatened. around the world, our adversaries will inevitably seek to enjoy many of the same In the post-Cold War era, America and space advantages in the future. Moreover,its allies, rather than the Soviet Union, have “space commerce” is a growing part of thebecome the primary objects of deterrence global economy. In 1996, commercial 54
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurylaunches exceeded military launches in the space medium, and an ability to deny othersUnited States, and commercial revenues the use of space” – must be an essentialexceeded government expenditures on element of our military strategy. If Americaspace. Today, more than 1,100 commercial cannot maintain that control, its ability tocompanies across more than 50 countries are conduct global military operations will bedeveloping, building, and operating space severely complicated, far more costly, andsystems. potentially fatally compromised. Many of these commercial spacesystems have direct military applications,including information from globalpositioning system constellations and better-than-one-meter resolution imaging satellites.Indeed, 95 percent of current U.S. militarycommunications are carried overcommercial circuits, including commercialcommunications satellites. The U.S. SpaceCommand foresees that in the comingdecades, an adversary will have sophisticated regional situational awareness. Enemies may very well know, in near- real time, the disposition of all As exemplified by the Global forces….In fact, national military Positioning Satellite above, space forces, paramilitary units, terrorists, and any other potential adversaries will has become a new ‘international share the high ground of space with the commons’ where commercial and United States and its allies. security interests are intertwined. Adversaries may also share the same commercial satellite services for The complexity of space control will communications, imagery, and navigation….The space “playing field” only grow as commercial activity increases. is leveling rapidly, so U.S. forces will American and other allied investments in be increasingly vulnerable. Though space systems will create a requirement to adversaries will benefit greatly from secure and protect these space assets; they space, losing the use of space may be are already an important measure of more devastating to the United States. American power. Yet it will not merely be It would be intolerable for U.S. enough to protect friendly commercial uses forces...to be deprived of capabilities in of space. As Space Command also space. recognizes, the United States must also have the capability to deny Americas adversaries In short, the unequivocal supremacy in the use of commercial space platforms forspace enjoyed by the United States today military purposes in times of crises andwill be increasingly at risk. As Colin Gray conflicts. Indeed, space is likely to becomeand John Sheldon have written, “Space the new “international commons,” wherecontrol is not an avoidable issue. It is not an commercial and security interests areoptional extra.” For U.S. armed forces to intertwined and related. Just as Alfredcontinue to assert military preeminence, Thayer Mahan wrote about “sea-power” atcontrol of space – defined by Space the beginning of the 20th century in thisCommand as “the ability to assure access to sense, American strategists will be forced tospace, freedom of operations within the regard “space-power” in the 21st. 55
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century To ensure Americas control of space in coherent policy and program for achievingthe near term, the minimum requirements this goal.are to develop a robust capability totransport systems to space, carry on Ends and Means of Space Controloperations once there, and service andrecover space systems as needed. As As with defense spending more broadly,outlined by Space Command, carrying out the state of U.S. “space forces” – thethis program would include a mix of re- systems required to ensure continued accessuseable and expendable launch vehicles and and eventual control of space – hasvehicles that can operate within space, deteriorated over the past decade, and fewincluding “space tugs to deploy, new initiatives or programs are on thereconstitute, replenish, refurbish, augment, immediate horizon. The U.S. approach toand sustain" space systems. But, over the space has been one of dilatory drift. Aslonger term, Gen. Richard Myers, commander-in-chief ofmaintaining In the future, it SPACECOM, put it, “Our Cold War-eracontrol ofspace will will be necessary capabilities have atrophied,” even though to unite the those capabilities are still important today.inevitably And while Space Command has a clearrequire the current vision of what must be done in space, itapplication SPACECOM speaks equally clearly about “the question ofof force bothin space and vision for control resources.” As the command succinctly of space to the notes its long-range plan: “When we matchfrom space, the reality of space dependence againstincluding but institutional resource trends, we find a problem.”not limited responsibilitiesto anti- and interests of a But in addition to the problem of lack ofmissile resources, there is an institutional problem.defenses and separate military Indeed, some of the difficulties indefensive service. maintaining U.S. military space supremacysystems result from the bureaucratic “black hole”capable of protecting U.S. and allied that prevents the SPACECOM vision fromsatellites; space control cannot be sustained gaining the support required to carry it out.in any other fashion, with conventional land, For one, U.S. military space planningsea, or airforce, or by electronic warfare. remains linked to the ups and downs of theThis eventuality is already recognized by National Aeronautics and Spaceofficial U.S. national space policy, which Administration. America’s difficulties instates that the “Department of Defense shall reducing the cost of space launches –maintain a capability to execute the mission perhaps the single biggest hurdle toareas of space support, force enhancement, improving U.S. space capabilities overall –space control and force application.” result in part from the requirements and(Emphasis added.) dominance of NASA programs over the past several decades, most notably the space In sum, the ability to preserve American shuttle program. Secondly, within themilitary preeminence in the future will rest national security bureaucracy, the majorityin increasing measure on the ability to of space investment decisions are made byoperate in space militarily; both the the National Reconnaissance Office and therequirements for effective global missile Air Force, neither of which considersdefenses and projecting global conventional military operations outside the earthsmilitary power demand it. Unfortunately, atmosphere as a primary mission. And thereneither the Clinton Administration nor past is no question that in an era of tightenedU.S. defense reviews have established a 56
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurybudgets, investments in space-control commerce, politics and power. Any nationcapabilities have suffered for lack of wishing to assert itself globally must takeinstitutional support and have been squeezed account of this other new “globalout by these organization’s other priorities. commons.”Although, under the Goldwater-Nicholsreforms of the mid-1980s, the unified The Internet is also playing ancommanders – of which SPACECOM is one increasingly important role in warfare and– have a greater say in Pentagon human political conflict. From the early useprogramming and budgeting, these powers of the Internet by Zapatista insurgents inremain secondary to the traditional “raise- Mexico to the war in Kosovo, communi-and-train” powers of the separate services. cation by computer has added a new dimension to warfare. Moreover, the use of Therefore, over the long haul, it will be the Internet to spread computer virusesnecessary to unite the essential elements of reveals how easy it can be to disrupt thethe current SPACECOM vision to the normal functioning of commercial and evenresource-allocation and institution-building military computer networks. Any nationresponsibilities of a military service. In which cannot assure the free and secureaddition, it is almost certain that the conduct access of its citizens to these systems willof warfare in outer space will differ as much sacrifice an element of its sovereignty andfrom traditional air warfare as air warfare its power.has from warfare at sea or on land; spacewarfare will demand new organizations, Although many concepts of “cyber-war”operational strategies, doctrines and training have elements of science fiction about them,schemes. Thus, the argument to replace and the role of the Defense Department inU.S. Space Command with U.S. Space establishing “control,” or even whatForces – a separate service under the “security” on the Internet means, requires aDefense Department – is compelling. While consideration of a host of legal, moral andit is conceivable that, as military space political issues, there nonetheless willcapabilities develop, a transitory “Space remain an imperative to be able to denyCorps” under the Department of the Air America and its allies enemies the ability toForce might make sense, it ought to be disrupt or paralyze either the militarys orregarded as an intermediary step, analogous the commercial sectors computer networks.to the World War II-era Army Air Corps, Conversely, an offensive capability couldnot to the Marine Corps, which remains a offer Americas military and political leaderspart of the Navy Department. If space an invaluable tool in disabling an adversarycontrol is an essential element for in a decisive manner.maintaining American military preeminencein the decades to come, then it will be Taken together, the prospects for spaceimperative to reorganize the Department of war or “cyberspace war” represent the trulyDefense to ensure that its institutional revolutionary potential inherent in the notionstructure reflects new military realities. of military transformation. These future forms of warfare are technologicallyCyberpace, or ‘Net-War’ immature, to be sure. But, it is also clear that for the U.S. armed forces to remain preeminent and avoid an Achilles Heel in If outer space represents an emerging the exercise of its power they must be suremedium of warfare, then “cyberspace,” and that these potential future forms of warfarein particular the Internet hold similar favor America just as today’s air, land andpromise and threat. And as with space, sea warfare reflect United States militaryaccess to and use of cyberspace and the dominance.Internet are emerging elements in global 57
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century Transforming U.S. transformation have been opposed and seen their programs terminated by the services. Conventional Forces Neither does the current process of “joint experimentation” seem likely to speed the Much has been written in recent years process of change. In sum, the transfor- about the need to transform the conventional mation of the bulk of U.S. armed forces has armed forces of the United States to take been stalled. Until the process of transfor- advantage of the “revolution in military mation is treated as an enduring mission – affairs,” the process of transformation within worthy of a constant allocation of dollars the Defense Department has yet to bear and forces – it will remain stillborn. serious fruit. The two visions of transformation promulgated by the Joint There are some very good reasons why Chiefs of Staff – Joint Vision 2010 and the this is so. In an era of insufficient defense just-released Joint Vision 2020 – have been resources, it has been necessary to fund or broad statements of principles and of staff any efforts at transformation by short- commitment to transformation, but very changing other, more immediate, require- little change can be seen in the acquisition of ments. Consequently, the attempt to deal new weapons systems. Indeed, new ideas with the longer-term risks that a failure to like the so-called “arsenal ship” which might transform U.S. armed forces will create has actually have accelerated the process of N o R &D , N o R M A ? Declining R&D Funding Stymies Transformation 44 42($ Billions, constant 2001) 40 Budget Authority 38 36 34 32 30 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 58
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurythreatened to raise the risks those forces face of operation, and organization to the armedtoday; this is an unpleasant dilemma for a services.force straining to meet the burdens of itscurrent missions. Activity today tends to This two-stage process is likely to takedrive out innovation for tomorrow. Second, several decades. Yet, although the precisethe lack of an immediate military competitor shape and direction of the transformation ofcontributes to a sense of complacency about U.S. armed forces remains a matter forthe extent and duration of American military rigorous experimentation and analysis (anddominance. Third, and perhaps most telling, will be discussed in more detail below in thethe process of transformation has yet to be section on the armed services), it is possiblelinked to the strategic tasks necessary to to foresee the general characteristics of themaintain American military dominance. current revolution in military affairs.This is in part a problem for transformation Broadly speaking, these cover severalenthusiasts, who are better at forecasting principal areas of capabilities:technological developments than aligningthose technological developments with the • Improved situational awareness andrequirements for American preeminence. sharing of information,Thus consideration of the so-called “anti- • Range and endurance of platformsaccess problem” – the observation that the and weapons,proliferation of long-range, precision-strike • Precision and miniaturization,capabilities will complicate the projection of • Speed and stealth,U.S. military power and forces – has • Automation and simulation.proceeded without much discussion of thestrategic effects on U.S. allies and American These characteristics will be combinedcredibility of increased reliance on weapons in various ways to produce new militaryand forces based in the United States rather capabilities. New classes of sensors –than operating from forward locations. commercial and military; on land, on andThere may be many solutions to the anti- under sea, in the air and in space – will beaccess problem, but only a few that will tend linked together in dense networks that canto maintain rather than dilute American be rapidly configured and reconfigured togeopolitical leadership. provide future commanders with an unprecedented understanding of the Further, transformation advocates tend battlefield. Communications networks willto focus on the nature of revolutionary new be equally if not more ubiquitous and dense,capabilities rather than how to achieve the capable of carrying vast amounts ofnecessary transformation: thus the National information securely to provide widelyDefense Panel called for a strategy of dispersed and diverse units with a commontransformation without formulating a picture of the battlefield. Conversely,strategy for transformation. There has been stealth techniques will be applied morelittle discussion of exactly how to change broadly, creating “hider-finder” games oftoday’s force into tomorrow’s force, while cat-and-mouse between sophisticatedmaintaining U.S. military preeminence military forces. The proliferation of ballisticalong the way. Therefore, it will be and cruise missiles and long-rangenecessary to undertake a two-stage process unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) will makeof transition – whereby today’s “legacy” it much easier to project military powerforces are modified and selectively around the globe. Munitions themselvesmodernized with new systems readily will become increasingly accurate, whileavailable – and true transformation – when new methods of attack – electronic, “non-the results of vigorous experimentation lethal,” biological – will be more widelyintroduce radically new weapons, concepts available. Low-cost, long-endurance UAVs, 59
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centuryand even unattended “missiles in a box” will ligence, command and control, and long-allow not only for long-range power projec- range precision strikes. Indeed, these capa-tion but for sustained power projection. bilities are sufficient to allow the armedSimulation technologies will vastly improve services to begin an “interim,” short- tomilitary training and mission planning. medium-term process of transformation right away, creating new force designs and Although it may take several decades operational concepts – designs and conceptsfor the process of transformation to unfold, different than those contemplated by thein time, the art of warfare on air, land, and current defense program – to maximize thesea will be vastly different than it is today, capabilities that already exist. But theseand “combat” likely will take place in new must be viewed as merely a way-stationdimensions: in space, “cyber-space,” and toward a more thoroughgoing transfor-perhaps the world of microbes. Air warfare mation.may no longer be fought by pilots manningtactical fighter aircraft sweeping the skies of The individual services also need to beopposing fighters, but a regime dominated given greater bureaucratic and legal standingby long-range, stealthy unmanned craft. On if they are to achieve these goals. Though aland, the clash of massive, combined-arms full discussion of this issue is outside thearmored forces may be replaced by the purview of this study, the reduced impor-dashes of much lighter, stealthier and tance of the civilian secretaries of the mili-information-intensive forces, augmented by tary departments and the service chiefs offleets of robots, some small enough to fit in staff is increasingly inappropriate to thesoldiers’ pockets. Control of the sea could demands of abe largely determined not by fleets of Until the process rapidlysurface combatants and aircraft carriers, but of transformation changing tech-from land- and space-based systems, forcing nological,navies to maneuver and fight underwater. is treated as an strategic andSpace itself will become a theater of war, as enduring military geopoliticalnations gain access to space capabilities and mission – worthy landscape.come to rely on them; further, the distinction The central-between military and commercial space of a constant ization ofsystems – combatants and noncombatants – allocation of power underwill become blurred. Information systems dollars and forces the Office ofwill become an important focus of attack, – it will remain the Secretaryparticularly for U.S. enemies seeking to of Defense andshort-circuit sophisticated American forces. stillborn. chairman ofAnd advanced forms of biological warfare the Joint Chiefs of Staff and Joint Staff, andthat can “target” specific genotypes may the increased role of the theater comman-transform biological warfare from the realm ders-in-chief, products of Cold-War-eraof terror to a politically useful tool. defense reforms and especially the Gold- water-Nichols Act of 1986, have created a This is merely a glimpse of the possi- process of defense decision-making thatbilities inherent in the process of transfor- often elevates immediate concerns abovemation, not a precise prediction. Whatever long-term needs. In an era of uncertaintythe shape and direction of this revolution in and transformation, it is more important tomilitary affairs, the implications for con- foster competing points of view about thetinued American military preeminence will how to apply new technologies to enduringbe profound. As argued above, there are missions.many reasons to believe that U.S. forcesalready possess nascent revolutionary capa- This is especially debilitating to thebilities, particularly in the realms of intel- process of transformation, which has 60
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurybecome infected with a “lowest common Yet the United States would be unwisedenominator” approach. “Jointness” to accept the larger proposition that theremains an important dimension of U.S. strategic value of land power has beenmilitary power and it will be necessary to eroded to the point where the nation noconsider the joint role of the weapons, longer needs to maintain large groundconcepts of operations and organizations forces. As long as wars and other militarycreated through the process of transfor- operations derive their logic from politicalmation. The capability for seamless and purposes, land power will remain the trulydecisive joint operations is an important decisive form of military power. Indeed, itaspect of warfare. Yet, the process of is ironic that, as post-Cold-War militarytransformation will be better served by operations have become more sophisticatedfostering a spirit of service competition and and more reliant on air power and long-experimentation. At this early stage of range strikes, they have become lesstransformation, it is unclear which politically decisive. American militarytechnologies will prove most effective; preeminence will continue to rest inbetter to undertake a variety of competing significant part on the ability to maintainexperiments, even though some may prove sufficient land forces to achieve politicalto be dead-ends. To achieve this goal, goals such as removing a dangerous andservice institutions and prerogatives must be hostile regime when necessary. Thus,strengthened to restore a better balance future Army forces – and land forces morewithin the Department of Defense. The broadly – must devise ways to survive andessential first step is to rebuild service maneuver in a radically changedsecretariats to attract highly talented people technological environment. The Army mustwho enjoy the political trust of the become more tactically agile, moreadministration they serve. A parallel second operationally mobile, and more strategicallystep is to reinvigorate the service staffs and deployable. It must increasingly rely onto select energetic service chiefs of staff. At other services to concentrate firepower whena time of rapid change, American military required, while concentrating on its “corepreeminence is more likely to be sustained competencies” of maneuver, situationalthrough a vigorous competition for missions awareness, and political decisiveness. Inand resources than through a bureaucracy – particular the process of Army transfor-and a conception of “jointness” – defined at mation should:the very height of the Cold War. • Move ahead with experiments to st create new kinds of independent unitsToward a 21 Century Army using systems now entering final There is very little question that the development and early procurement –development of new technologies increas- such as the V-22 tilt-rotor aircraftingly will make massed, mechanized armies and the HIMARS light-weight rocketvulnerable in high-intensity wars against artillery system – capable of longer-sophisticated forces. The difficulty of range operations and self-moving large formations in open terrain, deployments. Once mature, sucheven at night – suggested during the battle of units would replace forward-basedKhafji during the Gulf War – has diminished heavy forces.the role of tank armies in the face of the kindof firepower and precision that American air • Experiment vigorously to understandpower can bring to bear. This is an undeni- the long-term implications of theable change in the nature of advanced land revolution in military affairs for landwarfare, a change that will alter the size, forces. In particular, the Armystructure and nature of the U.S. Army. should develop ways to deploy and maneuver against adversaries with 61
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century improved long-range strike maximize current capabilities and introduce capabilities. selected new systems, and understanding the challenges and opportunities of information- As argued above, the two-stage process intensive operations, it must begin to seekof transforming the U.S. armed forces is answers to fundamental questions about fu-sufficiently important to consider it a sep- ture land forces. These questions include is-arate mission for the military services and sues of strategic deployability, how to ma-for the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The need for neuver on increasingly transparent battle-both the near-term and long-term transfor- fields and how to operate in urban environ-mation requires that a separate organization ments, to name but a few. If the first phasewithin these institutions act as the advocate of transformation requires the better part ofand agent of revolutionary change. For the the next decade to complete, the Army mustU.S. Army, the appropriate home for the then be ready to begin to implement moretransformation process is the Training and far-reaching changes. Moreover, theDoctrine Command. The service needs to technologies, operational concepts andestablish a permanent unit under its Com- organizations must be relatively mature –bined Arms Center at Fort Leavenworth, they can not merely exist as briefing chartsKansas to oversee the process of research, or laboratory concepts. As the first phase ofdevelopment and experi-mentation required transformation winds down, initial fieldto transform today’s Army into the Army of experiments for this second and morethe future. profound phase of change must begin. With the need to field the independent, While the exact scope and nature ofcombined-arms units described above, this such change is a matter for experimentation,“transformation laboratory” must be estab- Army studies already suggest that it will belished as rapidly as possible. Although dramatic. Consider just the potentialmany of the weapons systems already exist changes that might effect the infantryman.or are readily available, the introduction of Future soldiers may operate in encapsulated,new systems such as an armored gun sys- climate-controlled, powered fighting suits,tem, wheeled personnel carrier such as the laced with sensors, and boasting chameleon-Light Armored Vehicle or the HIMARS like “active” camouflage. “Skin-patch”rocket artillery system in sufficient numbers pharmaceuticals help regulate fears, focuswill take several years. Further, the process concentration and enhance endurance andof “digitization” – the proliferation of infor- strength. A display mounted on a soldier’smation and communications in tactical units helmet permits a comprehensive view of the– must be accelerated. Finally, the Army battlefield – in effect to look around cornersneeds to increase its investment in selected and over hills – and allows the soldier tonew systems such as UAVs and the Coman- access the entire combat information andche scout helicopter to field them more intelligence system while filtering incomingrapidly. These will need to be integrated data to prevent overload. Individualinto a coherent organization and doctrinal weapons are more lethal, and a soldier’sconcept. The process of near-term experi- ability to call for highly precise and reliablementation needs to be sharply focused on indirect fires – not only from Army systemsmeeting the Army’s near- and mid-term but those of other services – allows eachneeds, and to produce the new kinds of units individual to have great influence over hugeneeded. spaces. Under the “Land Warrior” program, some Army experts envision a “squad” of Yet this initial process of transformation seven soldiers able to dominate an area themust be just the first step toward a more size of the Gettysburg battlefield – where, inradical reconfiguring of the Army. Even 1863, some 165,000 men fought.while the Army is fielding new units that 62
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century ironically, as the Air Force seems to achieve the capabilities first dreamt of by the great pioneers and theorists of air power, the “technological moment” of manned aircraft may be entering a sunset phase. In retrospect, it is the sophistication of highly accurate munitions in the Kosovo campaign that stands out – even as the stealthy B-2 bomber was delivering satellite-guided bombs on 30-hour round-trip missions from Missouri to the Balkans and back, so was the Navy’s ancient, slow, propeller-driven P-3 Orion aircraft, originally designed for submarine hunting, delivering precision- guided standoff weapons with much the same effectiveness. As the relative value of electronic systems and precision munitions increases, the need for advanced manned aircraft appears to be lessening. Moreover,The Army’s Even radical as the importance of East Asia grows in U.S.‘Land concepts such as those military strategy, the requirements for rangeWarrior’ con-sidered under the and endurance may outweigh traditionalexperiments “Land Warrior” project measures of aircraft performance. In sum,will greatly do not involve out- although the U.S. Air Force is enjoying aincrease the landish technologies or moment of technological and tacticalvalue of flights of science supremacy, it is uncertain that the service isdismounted fiction. Many already positioning itself well for a transformed exist today, and many future.infantry. follow developments incivilian medical, communications, infor- In particular, the Air Force’s emphasismation science and other fields of research. on traditional, tactical air operations isWhile initiating the process of transfor- handicapping the nation’s ability to maintainmation in the near term, and while fielding and extend its dominance in space. Over thenew kinds of units to meet current missions, past decade, the Air Force has intermittentlythe Army must simultaneously invest and styled itself as a “space and air force,” andexperiment vigorously to create the systems, has prepared a number of useful long-rangesoldiers, units and concepts to maintain studies that underscore the centrality ofAmerican preeminence in land combat for space control in future military operations.the longer-term future. Yet the service’s pattern of investments has belied such an understanding of the future;Global Strikes from Air and Space as described above, the Air Force has ploughed every available dollar into the F- The rapidly growing ability of the U.S. 22 program. While the F-22 is a superbAir Force to conduct precision strikes, over fighter and perhaps a workable strikeincreasingly greater range, marks a aircraft, its value under a transformedsignificant change in the nature of high- paradigm of high-technology warfare maytechnology warfare. From the Gulf War exceed its cost – had not the majority of thethrough the air war for Kosovo, the F-22 program already been paid for, thesophistication of Air Force precision decision to proceed with the project todaybombing has continued to grow. Yet, would have been dubious. As also argued 63
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centuryabove, further investments in the Joint Strike the F-22, the Air Force will remain primarilyFighter program would be more expensive capable of sophisticated theater-strikestill and would forestall any major warfare. Yet to truly transform itself for thetransformation efforts. Therefore, the Air coming century, the Air Force mustForce should: accelerate its efforts to create the new systems – and, to repeat, the space-based• Complete its planned F-22 systems – that are necessary to shift the procurement while terminating its scope of air operations from the theater level participation in the JSF program and to the global level. While mounting large- upgrading the capabilities of existing scale and sustained air campaigns will tactical aircraft, especially by continue to rely heavily upon in-theater purchasing additional precision assets, a greater balance must be placed on munitions and developing new ones long-range systems. and increasing numbers of support aircraft to allow for longer-range The Navy Returns ‘To the Sea’ operations and greater survivability; Since the end of the Cold War, the Navy• Increase efforts to develop long-range has made a dramatic break with past and high-endurance unmanned aerial doctrine, which emphasized the need to vehicles, not merely for establish control of the sea. But with reconnaissance but for strike and American control of the “international even air-combat missions; commons” without serious challenge – for the moment – the Navy now preaches the• Pursue the development of large- gospel of power projection ashore and bodied stealthy aircraft for a variety operations in littoral waters. In a series of of roles, including lift, refueling, and posture statements and white papers other support missions as well as beginning with “…From the Sea” in 1992 strike missions. and leading to 1998’s “Forward…from the Sea: Anytime, Anywhere,” the Navy, in• Target significant new investments cooperation with the Marine Corps, toward creating capabilities for embraced this view of close-in operations; to operating in space, including quote the original “From the Sea:” inexpensive launch vehicles, new satellites and transatmospheric Our ability to command the seas in vehicles, in preparation for a decision areas where we anticipate future as to whether space warfare is operations allows us to resize our Naval sufficiently different from combat Forces and to concentrate more on within earth’s atmosphere so as to capabilities required in the complex require a separate “space service.” operating environment of the “littoral” or coastlines of the earth….This strategic direction, derived from the Such a transformation would in fact National Security Strategy, represents abetter realize the Air Force’s stated goal of fundamental shift away from open-becoming a service with true global reach ocean warfighting on the sea—towardand global strike capabilities. At the joint operations conducted from the sea.moment, today’s Air Force gives a glimpseof such capabilities, and does a remarkable The “From the Sea” series also hasjob of employing essentially tactical systems made the case for American militaryin a world-wide fashion. And, for the period presence around the world and equated thisof transition mandated by these legacy forward presence specifically with navalsystems and by the limitations inherent in presence. Following the lead of the 64
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New CenturyQuadrennial Defense Review, the Navy and anti-ship missiles, and other weapons thatMarine Corps argue that “shaping and will complicate the operations of U.S. fleetsresponding require presence – maintaining in restricted, littoral waters. The Chineseforward-deployed, combat-ready naval navy has just recently taken delivery of theforces. Being ‘on-scene’ matters! It is and first of several planned Sovremenny classwill remain a distinctly naval contribution to destroyers, purchased along with supersonic,peacetime engagement….The inherent anti-ship cruise missiles from Russia, greatlyflexibility of naval forces allows a minor improving China’s ability to attack U.S.crisis or conflict to be resolved quickly be Navy ships.on-scene forces.” The sea services furtherhave argued that the conduct of thesepresence missions requires the same kinds ofcarrier battle groups and amphibious readygroups that were needed to fight the SovietUnion. The balanced, concentrated striking power of aircraft carrier battle groups and amphibious ready groups lies at the heart of our nation’s ability to execute China’s acquisition of modern Russian its strategy of peacetime engagement. destroyers and supersonic anti-ship Their power reassures allies and deters cruise missiles will complicate U.S. would-be aggressors….The combined capabilities of a carrier battle group surface fleet operations. and an amphibious ready group offer air, sea, and land power that can be In addition, America’s adversaries will applied across the full spectrum of gradually acquire the ability to target surface conflict. fleets, not only in littoral waters but perhaps on the open oceans. Regional powers have Thus, while the Navy admitted that the increasing access to commercial satellitesstrategic realities of the post-Soviet era that not only can provide them withcalled for a reordering of sea service mission detection and militarily useful targetingpriorities and a resizing of the fleet, it has information, but provide also importantyet to consider that the new era also requires elements of the command, control anda reorientation of its pattern of operations communication capabilities that would beand a reshaping of the fleet. Moreover, over needed. As Fages put it, “Of concern in thethe longer term, the Navy’s ability to operate 21st century is the potential that thein littoral waters is going to be increasingly combination of space-based reconnaissance,difficult, as the Navy itself realizes. As Rear long-range precision strike weapons andAdm. Malcolm Fages, director of the Navy’s robust command and control networks couldsubmarine warfare division, told the Senate make non-stealthy platforms increasinglyArmed Services Committee, “A variety of vulnerable to attack near the world’sindependent studies reviewing key trends in littorals.”future naval warfare have concluded that21st century littoral warfare could be marked To preserve and enhance the ability toby the use of asymmetrical means to counter project naval power ashore and to conducta U.S. Navy whose doctrine and force strike operations – as well as assume a largestructure projects…power ashore from the role in the network of ballistic missilelittorals.” Already potential adversaries defense systems – the Navy must acceleratefrom China to Iran are investing in quiet the process of near-term transformation. Itdiesel submarines, tactical ballistic missiles, must also addressing the longer-termcruise and other shore- and sea-launched challenge of the revolution in military 65
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centuryaffairs, to ensure that the America rules the Navy should continue to shift away fromwaves in the future as it does today. Navy carrier-centered operations to “networks” oftransformation should be a two-phase varied kinds of surface ships, perhapsprocess: leading to fleets composed of stealthy surface ships and submerged vessels.• Near-term Navy transformation should accelerate the construction of The focus of the Navy’s near-term planned generations of 21st century transformation efforts should be on surface combatants with increased enhancing its ability to conduct strike stealth characteristics, improved and operations and improving its contributions varied missiles and long-range guns to joint operations on land by patrolling for strikes ashore. Efforts to littoral waters. The Navy’s initiatives to implement “network-centric” warfare wring the most out of its current vessels under the cooperative engagement through the better gathering and distribution concept should be accelerated. The of information – what the Navy calls Navy should begin to structure itself “network-centric” warfare as opposed to for its emerging role in missile “platform-centric” warfare – should be defenses, determining, for example, accelerated. In addition to improving whether current surface combatant intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance vessels and a traditional rotational capabilities and command and control deployment scheme are apropos for networks, the Navy should, as described this mission. above, acquire larger fleets of surface combatants and submarines capable of• In the longer term, the Navy must launching cruise missiles. Expanding the determine whether its current focus Navy’s fleet of surface combatants primarily on littoral operations can be sustained should provide an opportunity to speed up under a transformed paradigm of research and development of the new classes naval warfare and how to retain of destroyers and cruisers – and perhaps new control of open-ocean areas in the frigates – while perhaps extending only future. Experiments in operating modestly current destroyer programs. varied fleets of UAVs should begin now, perhaps employing a retired Moreover, the Navy should accelerate current carrier. Consideration should efforts to develop other strike warfare be directed toward other forms of munitions and weapons. In addition to unmanned sea and air vehicles and procuring greater numbers of attack toward an expanded role for submarines, the Navy should convert four of submarines. its Trident ballistic missile submarines to conventional strike platforms, much as the The shifting pattern of naval operations Air Force has done with manned bombers.and the changes in force structure outlined Further, the Navy should develop otherabove also should show the way for a strike weaponry beyond current-generationtransformation of the Navy for the emerging Tomahawk cruise missiles. Adding theenvironment for war at sea. In the imme- Joint Direct Attack Munition – applyingdiate future, this means an improvement in Global-Positioning-System guidance tonaval strike capabilities for joint operations current “dumb” bombs – will improve thein littoral waters and improved command precision-strike capabilities of current navaland control capabilities. Yet the Navy must aircraft, but improving the range andsoon prepare for a renewed challenge on the accuracy of naval gunfire, or deploying aopen oceans, beginning now to develop version of the Army Tactical Missile Systemways to project power as the risk to surface at sea would also increase the Navy’sships rises substantially. In both cases, the 66
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurycontribution to joint warfare in littoral but, given the service life of ships, wellregions. within the approaching planning horizons of the U.S. Navy – the Navy’s focus may However, improving the ability of return again to keeping command of thecurrent-generation ships and weapons to open oceans and sea lines of communi-work together is important, but may not cation. Absent a rigorous program ofaddress the most fundamental nature of this experimentation to investigate the nature oftransformation. The Navy has already the revolution in military affairs as it appliesdemonstrated the ability to operate to war at sea, the Navy might face a futureunmanned aerial and underwater vehicles Pearl Harbor – as unprepared for war in thefrom submarines and is improving its post-carrier era as it was unprepared for warabilities to communicate to submarines; as at the dawn of the carrier age.long as submerged vessels remain relativelystealthy, they may be able to operate where As Goes the Navy, So Goes thesurface vessels face high risks. Marine Corps Thus, the Navy should devote anelement of its force structure to a deeper Ironically for a service that is embracinginvestigation of the revolution in military certain aspects of the revolution in militaryaffairs. Beyond immediate opportunities affairs, the long-term pattern ofsuch as conversion of Trident submarines, transformation poses the deepest questionsconsideration should be given to employing for the Marine Corps. For if thea deactivated survivability of surface vessels increasinglycarrier to better The Navy will be in doubt, the Marines’ means ofunderstand the should consider delivery must likewise come into question.possibilities of Although the Corps is quite right to develop using a de- faster, longer-range means of ship-to-shoreoperating largefleets of UAVs at activated operations in the V-22 and Advancedsea. Likewise, carrier to better Amphibious Assault Vehicle, the potentialsubmerged vulnerability of Marine amphibious ships is understand the almost certain to become the limiting factor“missile pods,”either perma- possibilities and in future operations. While the utility ofnently deployed problems of Marine infantry in lower-intensityor laid covertly operating large operations will remain high, the Marines’by submarines in ability to con-tribute to high-technology fleets of UAVs wars – at least when operating from thetimes of crisis,could increase at sea. ships that they rely on for everything fromstrike capabilities without risking surface command and communications to logistics –vessels in littoral waters. In general, if the may become marginalized. Also, theNavy is moving toward “network-centric” relatively slow speeds of Marine ships limitwarfare, it should explore ways of their flexibility in times of crisis.increasing the number of “nodes on the net.” Over the next decade, the Marines’ For the moment, the U.S. Navy enjoys a efforts toward transformation ought to allowlevel of global hegemony that surpasses that the Corps to lighten its structures and rely onof the Royal Navy during its heyday. While other services, and especially the Navy, tothe ability to project naval power ashore is, provide much of its firepower. This willas it has always been, an important permit the Marines to shed many of thesubsidiary mission for the Navy, it may not heavy systems acquired during the Coldremain the service’s primary focus through War, to reduce its artillery (the Marines,the coming decades. Over the longer term – typically, operate the oldest artillery systems 67
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurythat are less effective and efficient in combat Thus, the long-term utility of the Marineand more of a logistical burden) and Corps rests heavily on the prospects for trueeventually its fixed-wing aviation. Indeed, transformation. As with the Army, if themany Marine F-18s and EA-6Bs spend the relationship between firepower andbulk of their time on regular aircraft carrier maneuver and situational awareness cannotrotations and in support of Air Force be redefined, then the relevance of landoperations. Likewise, the long-term future forces and naval infantry in future wars willof the AV-8B Harrier is in doubt. The be sharply curtailed – and the ability of theMarines operate a relatively small and United States to undertake politicallyincreasingly obsolescent fleet of Harriers; decisive operations will likewise be limited.while service-life extension programs may The proliferation of technologies forbe possible, the Corps will soon approach delivering highly accurate fires overthe day where it must contemplate life increasingly great distances poses a greatwithout fixed-wing air support of its own, challenge for both the Army and the Marineespecially if the Joint Strike Fighter program Corps, but rather than attempting to competeis terminated. Consequently, the Marine in the game of applying long-range fires,Corps should consider development of a both services would be better off attempting“gunship” version of the V-22 and pursue to complement the vastly improved strikeunmanned combat aerial vehicles, as well as capabilities of the Navy and Air Force, andaccelerating its efforts to develop methods indeed in linking decisive maneuvers toof joint-service fire support. future space capabilities as well. 68
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century VI DEFENSE SPENDING What, then, is the price of continued defense spending – has created a severeAmerican geopolitical leadership and “defense deficit,” totaling tens of billions ofmilitary preeminence? dollars annually. A finely detailed answer is beyond the The Congress has been complicit in thisscope of this study. Too many of the force defense decline. In the first years of theposture and service structure recommen- administration, Congress acquiesced in thedations above involve factors that current sharp reductions made by the Clintondefense planning has not accounted for. Administration from the amount projected inSuffice it to say that an expanded American the final Bush defense plan. Since thesecurity perimeter, new technologies and Republicans wonweapons systems including robust missile control of Use of the post-defenses, new kinds of organizations and Congress in 1994, Cold Waroperating concepts, new bases and the like very slight “peacewill not come cheap. Nonetheless, this additions havesection will attempt to establish broad guide- been made to dividend” tolines for a level of defense spending suf- administration balance theficient to maintain America military pre- defense requests, federal budgeteminence. In recent years, a variety of yet none has beenanalyses of the mismatch between the able to turn around has created aClinton Administration’s proposed defense the pattern of “defensebudgets and defense program have appeared. defense decline deficit” totalingThe estimates all agree that the Clinton until this year. tens of billionsprogram is underfunded; the differences lie Even these in-in gauging the amount of the shortage and creases were of dollarsrange from about $26 billion annually to achieved by the annually.$100 billion annually, with the higher use of accountingnumbers representing the more rigorous gimmicks thatanalyses. allow the government to circumvent the limitations of the 1997 balanced budgetTrends in Defense Spending agreement. Through all the accounting gimmicks, For the first time in 15 years, the 2001 defense spending has been almost perfectlydefense budget may reflect a modest real flat – indeed, the totals have been less thanincrease in U.S. defense spending. Both $1 billion apart – for the past four years.President Clinton’s defense budget request The steepest declines in defense spendingand the figures contained in the congres- were accomplished during the early years ofsional budget resolution would halt the slide the Clinton Administration, when defensein defense budgets. Yet the extended paying spending levels fell from about $339 billionof the “peace dividend” – and the creation of in 1992 to $277 billion in 1996. Thetoday’s federal budget surplus, the product cumulative effects of reduced defenseof increased tax revenues and reduced 69
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centuryspending over a decade or more have been shortfall is the question of what costs are noteven more severe. A recent study by the captured. All of these estimates measure theCenter for Strategic and International gap between current defense plans andStudies, Avoiding the Defense Train Wreck programs and current budgets; they make noin the New Millennium, compared the final allowance for the new missions and needs ofBush defense plan, covering 1994 through the post-Cold War world. They do not1999, with the defense plan of the Clinton capture the costs of deploying effectiveAdministration and found that a combina- missile defenses. They do not account fortion of budget changes and internal the costs of constabulary missions. They doPentagon actions had resulted in a net not consider the costs of transformation.reduction in defense spending of $162 Nor do they calculate the costs of the otherbillion from the Bush plan to the Clinton recommendations of this report, such asplan. Congressional budget increases and strengthening, reconfiguring, and reposition-supplemental appropriations requests added ing today’s force.back about $52 billion, but that spending forthe most part covered the cost of contin- In fact, the best way to measure defensegency operations and other readiness spending over longer periods of time is as ashortfalls – it did not buy back much of the portion of national wealth and federalmodernization that was deferred. Compared spending. By these metrics, defense budgetsto Bush-era budgets, the Clinton Admin- have continued to decline even asistration reduced procurement spending an Americans have become more prosperous inaverage of $40 billion annually. During the recent years. The defense budget now totalsperiod from 1993 to 2000, deferred pro- less than 3 percent of the gross domesticcurements – the infamous “procurement product – the lowest level of U.S. defensebow wave” – more than doubled from spending since the Depression. Defenseprevious levels to $426 billion, according to accounts for about 15 percent of federalthe report. spending – slightly more than interest on the debt, and less than one third of the amount The CSIS report is but the most recent spent on Social Security, Medicare and otherin a series of reports gauging the size of the entitlement programs, which account for 54mismatch between current long-term percent of federal spending. As the annualdefense plans and budgets. The Congres- federal budget has moved from deficit tosional Budget Office’s latest estimate of the surplus and more resources have becomeannual mismatch is at least $90 billion. available, there has been no serious orEven the 1997 Quadrennial Defense Review sustained effort to recapitalize U.S. armeditself allowed for a $12-to-15-billion annual forces.funding shortfall; now the Joint Chiefs ofStaff, according to news reports, are As troublesome as the trends of the pastinsisting on a $30-billion-per-year increase decade have been, as inadequate as currentin defense spending. In 1997 the Center for budgets are, the longer-term future is moreStrategic and Budgetary Assessments troubling still. If current spending levels arecalculated the annual shortfall at approxi- maintained, by some projections, the amountmately $26 billion and has now increased its of the defense shortfall will be almost astotal to $50 billion; analyst Michael large as the defense budget itself by 2020 –O’Hanlon of the Brookings Institution pegs 2.3 percent compared to 2.4 percent of grossthat gap at $27 billion, at a minimum. domestic product. In particular, as modern- ization spending slips farther and farther Perhaps more important than the behind requirements, the procurement bowquestion of which of these estimates best wave will reach tsunami proportions, sayscalculates the amount of the current defense CSIS: “By continuing to kick the can down 70
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century40 Second World War Trends in Defense Spending, 1940-200135302520 Korean War15 Vietnam War10 Reagan Buidup l5 Post-Cold War Drawdown01940 1945 1950 1955 1960 1965 1970 1975 1980 1985 1990 1995 2000 the road, the military departments will, in Budgets and the Strategy effect, create a situation in which they require $4.4 trillion in procurement dollars” Of Retreat from 2006 through 2020 to maintain the Recent defense reviews, and the 1997 current force. Quadrennial Defense Review and the accompanying report of the National After 2010 – seemingly a long way off Defense Panel especially, have framed the but well within traditional defense planning dilemma facing the Pentagon and the nation horizons – the outlook for increased military as a whole as a question of risk. At current spending under current plans becomes even and planned spending levels, the United more doubtful. In the coming decades, the States can preserve current forces and network of social entitlement programs, capabilities to execute current missions and particularly Social Security, will generate a sacrifice modernization, innovation and further squeeze on other federal spending transformation, or it can reduce personnel programs. If defense budgets remain at strength and force structure further to pay projected levels, America’s global military for new weapons and forces. Despite the preeminence will be impossible to maintain, QDR’s rhetoric about shaping the current as will the world order that is secured by strategic environment, responding to crises that preeminence. and preparing now for an uncertain future, 71
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centurythe Clinton Administration’s defense plans require significant further cuts in the size ofcontinue to place a higher priority on im- U.S. armed forces. According to CSIS, amediate needs than on preparing for a more shift in resources that would up the rate ofchallenging technological or geo-political modernized equipment to 76 percent – not afuture; as indicated in the force posture figure specified by the NDP but one notsection above, the QDR retains the two-war inconsistent with that general approach –standard as the central feature of defense would require reducing the total strength ofplanning and the sine qua non of America’s U.S. forces to just 1 million, again assumingclaim to be a global superpower. The 3 percent of GDP were devoted to defenseNational Defense Panel, with its call for a spending. Thus, at current spending levels“transformation strategy,” argued that the the Pentagon must choose between force“priority must go to the future.” The two- structure and modernization.war standard, in the panel’s assessment, “hasbecome a means of justifying current forces. When it is recalled that a projection ofThis approach focuses resources on a low- defense spending levels at 3 percent of GDPprobability scenario, which consumes funds represents the most optimistic assumptionthat could be used to reduce risk to our long- about current Pentagon plans, the horns ofterm security.” this dilemma appear sharper still: at these levels, U.S. forces soon will be too old or Again, the CSIS study’s affordability too small. Following the administration’sassessments suggest the trade-offs between “live for today” path will ensure that, inmanpower and force structure that must be some future high-intensity war, U.S. forces made under current will lack the cutting-edge technologies that If defense budget constraints. For they have come to rely on. Following the example, CSIS esti- NDP’s “prepare for tomorrow” path, U.S. spending mates that the cost of forces will lack the manpower needed to remains at modernizing the conduct their current missions. From con- current current 1.37 million- stabulary duties to the conduct of major levels, U.S. man force would theater wars, the ability to defend current require procurement U.S. security interests will be placed at forces will spending of $164 growing risk. soon be too billion per year. While old or too we might not agree In a larger sense, these two approaches with every aspect of the differ merely about the nature and timing of small. methodology under- a strategy of American retreat. By commit-lying this calculation, the larger point is ting forces to the Balkans, maintaining U.S.clear: if defense spending remains at current presence in the Persian Gulf, and by respon-levels, as current plans under the QDR ding to Chinese threats to Taiwan and send-assume, the Pentagon would only be able to ing peacekeepers to East Timor, the Clintonmodernize a little more than half the force. Administration has, haltingly, incrementallyUnder this scenario, U.S. armed forces and often fecklessly, taken some of thewould become increasingly obsolescent, necessary steps for strengthening the newexpensive to operate and outclassed on the American security perimeter. But bybattlefield. As the report concludes, “U.S. holding defense spending and militarymilitary forces will lose their credibility both strength to their current levels, theat home and abroad regarding their size, age, administration has compromised the nation’sand technological capabilities for carrying ability to fight large-scale wars today andout the national military strategy.” consumed the investments that ought to haveConversely, adopting the National Defense been made to preserve American militaryPanel approach of accepting greater risk preeminence tomorrow. The reckoning fortoday while preparing for the future would 72
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Century The Procurement HolidayLiving Off the Investments of the Reagan Years Budget Authority, 1981-2001 140 130 120 110 100 90 80 70 60 50 40 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 19 20 19 19 19 19 1 1 19 19 1 1 19 19 20 20 19 19 1 19 1 19 20 98 98 98 98 98 98 81 83 87 91 93 95 97 99 01 81 81 8 8 93 93 9 9 99 99 01 01 81 8 85 89 93 9 99 0 5 5 9 9 1 1 5 5 9 1 such a strategy will come when U.S. forces maintained. But as service chiefs and other are unable to meet the demands placed upon senior military leaders readily admit, today’s them. This may happen when they take on forces are barely adequate to maintain the one mission too many – if, say, NATO’s rotation of units to the myriad peacekeeping role in the Balkans expands, or U.S troops and other constabulary duties they face enforce a demilitarized zone on the Golan while keeping adequate forces for a single Heights – and a major theater war breaks major theater war in reserve. out. Or, it may happen when two major theater wars occur nearly simultaneously. An active-duty force reduced by another Or it may happen when a new great power – 300,000 to 400,000 – almost another 30 a rising China – seeks to challenge percent cut from current levels and a total American interests and allies in an important reduction of more than half from Cold-War region. levels – to free up funds for modernization and transformation would be clearly By contrast, a strategy that sacrifices inadequate to the demands of today’s force structure and current readiness for missions and national military strategy. If future transformation will leave American the United States withdrew forces from the armed forces unable to meet today’s Balkans, for example, it is unlikely that the missions and commitments. Since today’s rest of NATO would be able to long pick up peace is the unique product of American the slack; conversely, such a withdrawal preeminence, a failure to preserve that would provoke a political crisis within preeminence allows others an opportunity to NATO that would certainly result in the end shape the world in ways antithetical to of American leadership within NATO; it American interests and principles. The price might well spell the end of the alliance of American preeminence is that, just as it itself. Likewise, terminating the no-fly- was actively obtained, it must be actively zones over Iraq would call America’s 73
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centuryposition as guarantor of security in the sensible forward-basing posture; long-termPersian Gulf into question; the reaction security commitments should not bewould be the same in East Asia following a supported by the debilitating, short-termwithdrawal of U.S. forces or a lowering of rotation of units except as a last resort. InAmerican military presence. The conse- Europe, the Persian Gulf and East Asia,quences sketched by the Quadrennial enduring U.S. security interests argueDefense Review regarding a retreat from a forcefully for an enduring American militarytwo-war capability would inexorably come presence. Pentagon policy-makers mustto pass: allies and adversaries alike would adjust their plans to accommodate thesebegin to hedge against American retreat and realities and to reduce the wear and tear ondiscount American security guarantees. At service personnel. We have also argued thatcurrent budget levels, a modernization or the services can begin now to create new,transformation strategy is in danger of more flexible units and militarybecoming a “no-war” strategy. While the organizations that may, over time, prove toAmerican peace might not come to a be smaller than current organizations, evencatastrophic end, it would quickly begin to for peacekeeping and constabularyunravel; the result would be much the same operations.in time. Even as American military forces patrolThe Price of American an expanding security perimeter, we believe it essential to retain sufficient forces basedPreeminence in the continental United States capable of rapid reinforcement and, if needed, applying As admitted above, calculating the exact massive combat power to stabilize a regionprice of armed forces capable of maintaining in crisis or to bring a war to a successfulAmerican military preeminence today and conclusion. There should be a strongextending it into the future requires more strategic synergy between U.S. forcesdetailed analysis than this broad study can overseas and in a reinforcing posture: unitsprovide. We have advocated a force posture operating abroad are an indication ofand service structure that diverges American geopolitical interests andsignificantly both from current plans and leadership, provide significant militaryalternatives advanced in other studies. We power to shape events and, in wartime,believe it is necessary to increase slightly create the conditions for victory whenthe personnel strength of U.S. forces – many reinforced. Conversely, maintaining theof the missions associated with patrolling ability to deliver an unquestioned “knockoutthe expanding American security perimeter punch” through the rapid introduction ofare manpower-intensive, and planning for stateside units will increase the shapingmajor theater wars must include the ability power of forces operating overseas and thefor politically decisive campaigns including vitality of our alliances. In sum, we see anextended post-combat stability operations. enduring need for large-scale AmericanAlso, this expanding perimeter argues forces.strongly for new overseas bases and forwardoperating locations to facilitate American But while arguing for improvements inpolitical and military operations around the today’s armed services and force posture,world. we are unwilling to sacrifice the ability to maintain preeminence in the longer term. If At the same time, we have argued that the United States is to maintain itsestablished constabulary missions can be preeminence – and the military revolutionmade less burdensome on soldiers, sailors, now underway is already an American-ledairmen and Marines and less burdensome on revolution – the Pentagon must begin inoverall U.S. force structure by a more earnest to transform U.S. military forces. 74
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New CenturyWe have argued that this transformation precisely based upon known budget plans ismission is yet another new mission, as unsound. Likewise, generating independentcompelling as the need to maintain cost analyses is beyond the scope of thisEuropean stability in the Balkans, prepare report and would be based upon greatfor large, theater wars or any other of political and technological uncertainties –today’s missions. This is an effort that any detailed assumptions about the cost ofinvolves more than new weaponry or new overseas bases or revolutionarytechnologies. It requires experimental units weaponry are bound to be highly speculativefree to invent new concepts of operation, absent rigorous net assessments andnew doctrines, new tactics. It will require program analysis. Nevertheless, we believeyears, even decades, to fully grasp and that, over time, the program we advocateimplement such changes, and will surely would require budgets roughly equal toinvolve mistakes and inefficiencies. Yet the those necessary to fully fund the QDR forcemaintenance of the American peace requires – a minimum level of 3.5 to 3.8 percent ofthat American forces be preeminent when gross domestic product. A sensible planthey are called upon to face very different would add $15 billion to $20 billion to totaladversaries in the future. defense spending annually through the Future Years Defense Program; this would Finally, we have argued that we must result in a defense “topline” increase of $75restore the foundation of American security billion to $100 billion over that period, aand the basis for U.S. military operations small percentage of the $700 billion on-abroad by improving our homeland budget surplus now projected for that samedefenses. The current American peace will period. We believe that the new president be short-lived if should commit his administration to a planThe program we the United to achieve that level of spending within fouradvocate – one States becomes years. vulnerable tothat would provide rogue powers In its simplest terms, our intent is toAmerica with with small, provide forces sufficient to meet today’sforces to meet the inexpensive missions as effectively and efficiently asstrategic demands arsenals of possible, while readying U.S. armed forces ballistic missiles for the likely new missions of the future.of the world’s sole and nuclear Thus, the defense program described abovesuperpower – warheads or would preserve current force structure whilerequires budget other weapons improving its readiness, better posturing it of mass for its current missions, and making selectedlevels to be destruction. We investments in modernization. At the sameincreased to 3.5 to cannot allow time, we would shift the weight of defense3.8 percent of the North Korea, recapitalization efforts to transforming U.S.GDP. Iran, Iraq or forces for the decades to come. At four similar states to cents on the dollar of America’s nationalundermine American leadership, intimidate wealth, this is an affordable program.American allies or threaten the Americanhomeland itself. The blessings of the It is also a wise program. Only such aAmerican peace, purchased at fearful cost force posture, service structure and level ofand a century of effort, should not be so defense spending will provide America andtrivially squandered. its leaders with a variety of forces to meet the strategic demands of the world’s sole Taken all in all, the force posture and superpower. Keeping the American peaceservice structure we advocate differ enough requires the U.S. military to undertake afrom current plans that estimating its costs broad array of missions today and rise to 75
    • Rebuilding America’s Defenses: Strategy, Forces and Resources for a New Centuryvery different challenges tomorrow, but when the mood strikes us or when our corethere can be no retreat from these missions national security interests are directlywithout compromising American leadership threatened; then it is already too late.and the benevolent order it secures. This is Rather, it is a choice whether or not tothe choice we face. It is not a choice maintain American military preeminence, tobetween preeminence today and secure American geopolitical leadership,preeminence tomorrow. Global leadership and to preserve the American peace.is not something exercised at our leisure, 76
    • PROJECT PARTICIPANTS Roger Barnett Mark Lagon U.S. Naval War College Senate Foreign Relations Committee Alvin Bernstein James Lasswell National Defense University GAMA Corporation Stephen Cambone I. Lewis Libby National Defense University Dechert Price & Rhoads Eliot Cohen Robert Martinage Nitze School of Advanced International Center for Strategic and Budgetary Studies, Johns Hopkins University Assessment Devon Gaffney Cross Phil Meilinger Donors Forum for International Affairs U.S. Naval War College Thomas Donnelly Mackubin Owens Project for the New American Century U.S. Naval War College David Epstein Steve Rosen Office of Secretary of Defense, Harvard University Net Assessment Gary Schmitt David Fautua Project for the New American Century Lt. Col., U.S. Army Abram Shulsky Dan Goure The RAND Corporation Center for Strategic and International Studies Michael Vickers Donald Kagan Center for Strategic and Budgetary Yale University Assessment Fred Kagan Barry Watts U. S. Military Academy at West Point Northrop Grumman Corporation Robert Kagan Paul Wolfowitz Carnegie Endowment for International Peace Nitze School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University Robert Killebrew Col., USA (Ret.) Dov Zakheim System Planning Corporation William Kristol The Weekly StandardThe above list of individuals participated in at least one project meeting or contributed a paper fordiscussion. The report is a product solely of the Project for the New American Century and does notnecessarily represent the views of the project participants or their affiliated institutions.