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  1. 1. REBUILDING AMERICA’S DEFENSESStrategy, Forces and Resources For a New Century A Report of The Project for the New American Century September 2000
  2. 2. 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
  3. 3. REBUILDING AMERICA’S DEFENSESStrategy, Forces and Resources For a New Century DONALD KAGAN GARY SCHMITT Project Co-Chairmen THOMAS DONNELLY Principal Author
  4. 4. 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
  5. 5. 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
  6. 6. 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
  7. 7. 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
  8. 8. 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
  9. 9. 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
  10. 10. 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
  11. 11. 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
  12. 12. 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
  13. 13. 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
  14. 14. 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
  15. 15. 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
  16. 16. 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
  17. 17. 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
  18. 18. 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
  19. 19. 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
  20. 20. 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
  21. 21. 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
  22. 22. 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
  23. 23. 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
  24. 24. 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
  25. 25. 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