Skip to Main Content
Have library access? Log in through your library
Research Report


Mackenzie Eaglen
Copyright Date: Oct. 1, 2017
Pages: 134
  • Cite this Item

Table of Contents

  1. (pp. 5-28)

    Restoring conventional US military deterrence is a long-overdue course change. Building off the strategic and analytical foundations of the defense straegy To Rebuild America’s Military, this report develops programmatic depth and detail to the principles and objectives identified in that publication. To Rebuild America’s Military laid out the ends of a new defense strategy for the United States and sketched out how military means fundamentally undergird all the tools of national power. This report supplements To Rebuild America’s Military by adding budgetary details—the ways—to the goals of repairing and rebuilding the military while making recommendations for force planning...

  2. (pp. 29-44)

    The US Army of the 21st century must possess the capacity and capability to conduct both high-intensity, combined-arms campaigns and large-scale, long-term stability operations. To ensure success on conventional battlefields, the Army should restore discarded Cold War–era competencies and modernize its forces with new and upgraded equipment. Preparing for future stability operations requires holding onto the lessons learned in recent wars and a thorough analysis of evolving trends in unconventional conflicts. Restoring the Army to a posture that mitigates the risk of military defeat will require a combination of:

    End-strength expansion,

    Large down payments on readiness,

    Acceleration of current...

  3. (pp. 45-64)

    What objectives should the 350-ship fleet accomplish? That is the question now that the Trump administration, Congress, and US Navy leadership have endorsed the larger fleet size. Over the past decade, a bipartisan consensus has emerged that naval forces must expand to meet the increasing demands placed on them.¹ Today’s Navy is too small to keep up with its myriad day-to-day missions and ill-equipped to fight for sea control in combat environments. Yet the Navy’s needs extend far beyond simple fleet size calculations. How the Navy grows and what that expansion includes will determine the Navy’s future ability to restore...

  4. (pp. 65-73)

    If the Marine Corps is the nation’s Swiss Army knife, then Commandant of the Marine Corps General Robert Neller wants a bigger, sharper blade. The Corps is changing. With the advent of the V-22, F-35B Joint Strike Fighter, CH-53K, and the America-class amphibious assault ships, the Marines are more expeditionary and deadly than ever.

    New Marine Corps operating concepts—from expeditionary advance base operations to distributed STOVL operations and the “Lightning carrier” idea—are all steps in the right direction. The service’s operational planning mirrors the Marilyn Ware Center’s vision for the future of amphibious operations in contested areas: lethal...

  5. (pp. 74-100)

    The days of assumed American air and space superiority are over. In no other area of warfare has the United States’ comparative advantage in warfighting suffered so profoundly over the past 25 years. Targeted investments in advanced integrated air defenses and long-range precision-guided missiles made by near-peer competitors disproportionately impact the US Air Force (USAF), both at its forward bases and in the air. For every DF-21D “carrier-killer” anti-ship ballistic missile deployed, there are dozens of other Chinese, Russian, North Korean, and Iranian ballistic and cruise missiles aimed at regional American air bases across the globe.

    To counter these threats,...

  6. (pp. 101-111)

    For truly joint enterprises and those that Repair and Rebuild believes should be joint, such as third offset technology development and command and control programs, this report includes one final section.

    President Trump has tasked Secretary of Defense James Mattis with conducting a new Nuclear Posture Review that will likely validate the necessity of the existing nuclear modernization program with some changes.¹ If the 2010 Nuclear Posture Review is any indication, translating the findings into changes to the nuclear program of record will take time. Current modernization priorities for the nuclear enterprise generally enjoy deep and widespread bipartisan consensus, although...

  7. (pp. 112-120)

    The intellectual, cultural, and programmatic underpinnings of the second offset began under the leadership of Secretary of Defense Harold Brown and Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering William Perry in the late 1970s. This work prepared the Pentagon for the Reagan buildup in the early to mid-1980s. Similarly, Secretary of Defense Ash Carter and Deputy Secretary of Defense Robert Work set the conditions for a third offset by fostering discussion on restoring American military technological superiority—a long-overdue recognition that the period of assumed American supremacy has come to an end.

    The core tenet of Repair and Rebuild...