A key word on everyone’s lips as they weigh up our national security needs against new threats and dire economic restraints is the word “balance.” Defense Secretary Robert Gates has called for greater balance in our military capabilities and our national security strategy to address both irregular and conventional warfare needs.
Balance also means calculating when it’s right and proper not to go to war. Or, as Doug Macgregor says in this month’s cover story, balancing the need to secure the U.S. against the risk of making the world more dangerous.
Macgregor details a proposal for an American national security program that achieves the goal of balancing vital national security missions within limited human and fiscal resources.
And Danny Davis follows with an article examining whether a surge of U.S. troops in Afghanistan is the best solution to that region’s problems.
Energy use is another area where the correct balance is vital. Scott Hamilton analyzes the many energy and green initiatives being pursued by DoD and major defense contractors, and how they are adapting to meet the energy-efficient goals of the services.
In Perspectives, Robert Wilkie calls for the Air Force to recognize that Gates is not kidding about his balanced strategy, but that contrary to what some in the Air Force suspect, it doesn’t exclude air power. Indeed, air power is essential, albeit adapted to the new reality.
James Kraska, a former undersecretary of defense global maritime security policy adviser, argues that the U.S. should participate in an international maritime treaty that has become the ‘constitution’ of the world’s oceans, but which America has so far resisted.
And in his Transition Strategy column, Joe Collins offers advice to the president’s national security team on how it might tiptoe through the political minefields that surely lie ahead.