Hard Choices: Responsible Defense in an Age of Austerity
David W Barno, Nora Bensahel, Travis Sharp
Center for a New American Security (CNAS), Washington, DC, United States
This report outlines the ends, ways and means of US defense strategy under a range of budgetary constraints. The authors highlight the strategic consequences of these constraints, so that political leaders grasp the risks and trade-offs the cuts portend. They offer four scenarios for defense budget reductions, and identify what they think are the best possible ways to cut US military force structure, end strength, procurement and overhead to reach the required levels of savings. The authors also consider the modified roles and missions, operational approaches and vulnerabilities that might result.