The United States must reconsider its national security strategy in light of major upcoming budget cuts, asserts a new Center for New American Security report. The world has changed dramatically since the Obama Administration released its strategy in May 2010, with developments like the imminent withdraw of troops from Iraq, the “Arab Spring,” and China’s rapid military buildup, states Hard Choices: Responsible Defense in an Age of Austerity. Add in significant defense budget cuts, which could range from $350 billion to $850 billion over the next decade, and some changes are going to have to take place, it states. However, that doesn’t mean that the United States must scale back completely. Instead, the Western Pacific and Indian Ocean should remain a priority, and the Middle East and Mediterranean Basin also will remain areas of “vital interest,” according to the report. However, the United States should “pursue a more limited defensive military posture” in South and Central Asia, it argues.
Adm. Christopher Grady, vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs and head of the Joint Requirements Oversight Council, is pushing a “portfolio” approach to requirements and wants his position to have “more teeth” so he can enforce it.