January 23, 2018

Can Mattis Succeed Where His Predecessors Have Failed?

Featuring Robert O. Work

Source: Foreign Policy

Journalist Christine Wormuth

Secretary of Defense James Mattis personally rolled out the U.S. government’s new National Defense Strategy in a speech last week, signaling his intellectual and bureaucratic ownership of the document. This is a good thing, and as one might expect from the so-called warrior monk, the strategy is a lot more about sensible approaches to a very complicated world — including a very strong emphasis on diplomacy and alliances — than it is about President Donald Trump’s “America First” agenda.

In a break from previous Quadrennial Defense Reviews, at the direction of Congress, the 2018 National Defense Strategy is actually a classified document — so much of what it tells the Defense Department to do will remain secret. What the unclassified summary does reveal is a clear prioritization of Russia and China as strategic competitors, over terrorism, as the primary concern for U.S. national security. As National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster has said more than a few times recently, “geopolitics are back.”

Read the full article here.


  • Robert O. Work

    Senior Counselor for Defense and Distinguished Senior Fellow for Defense and National Security

    Secretary Robert O. Work is the Distinguished Senior Fellow for Defense and National Security at the Center for a New American Security and the owner of TeamWork, LLC, which s...