CSIS hosted a roundtable discussion on the prospects for rationalizing the Department of Defense’s real property assets in a strategic context. These experts from across the political spectrum and with widely divergent views on national security nevertheless agreed that some process for base closure and realignment was needed. They also discussed how any future base closure and realignment process needed to learn from the past, to be fair to the local communities, and to accommodate congressional concerns.
Before putting special operators in harm’s way, the makers of policy and strategy must give great thought to the factors that determine tactical and strategic outcomes. With the demand for special operations forces exceeding the supply, the new administration must determine where scarce special operations personnel can best be employed, and where other U.S. and allied capabilities can most profitably shoulder the burden.
As the President-elect has indicated since winning the election, defense reform is likely to remain a high priority in the new administration. Decisions that the new administration make over the coming years will shape the future military. This analysis provides recommendations that should be considered for reforming the defense budget.
Given the various foreign policy and national security challenges, it will be critical that the new administration develop a strategic approach for their policy objectives. Strategy will help the new administration achieve goals, drive change, and determine which issues may benefit from continuity. This analysis provides recommended steps for an effective review process to help develop a strategy for national security challenges.
With the expansion of presidential war powers and an incoming administration, Congress is in an ideal position to reconsider the appropriate relationship with the executive branch on the use of force. This report provides a recommendation Congress should consider to re-establishing Congress’ role in authorizing military operations.
Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) funding poses challenges for the new administration as they prepare its FY 2018 budget request. OCO funding is intended for war-related activities that cannot be forecasted. However, it has become a convenient loophole for defense spending since it is not restricted by the Budget Control Act (BCA) budget caps. This analysis address the challenges presented by OCO funding and possible options for handling base budget activities in OCO.
Security cooperation enables the United States to deepen its global alliances and partnerships in pursuit of common security objectives. It will be critical to ensure FY17 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) reform provisions retains the U.S. competitive advantage globally through its network of alliances and partnerships. This analysis provides recommendations for the Trump administration to consider during security cooperation reform.
President-elect Donald Trump has proposed two goals for the federal government’s civilian workforce: making it smaller and increasing its quality. How can the administration use both carrots and sticks to achieve its goal of reducing the civilian workforce without going to war without its own work force? This analysis addresses this question through the lens of the civilian workforce in the Department of Defense to propose recommended changes.
On Tuesday, January 10, Dr. Kathleen H. Hicks, senior vice president, Henry A. Kissinger Chair, and director of the International Security Program at CSIS, testified before the Senate Armed Services Committee on civilian control of the armed forces. Click here to access written testimony or to view a full recording of the hearing.