November 06, 2019

CNAS and Defense One Partner for Year-Long Editorial Series: "The American Readiness Project"

With original reporting, research, and a body of expert commentary, the American Readiness Project will chronicle the nation’s desire, willingness, and capability for the U.S. to remain the world’s global security leader in the 21st century.

Washington, November 6, 2019Defense One, a division of Atlantic Media and Government Executive Media Group, and the Center for a New American Security (CNAS) have partnered to create “The American Readiness Project,” a series of original reported articles, opinion commentaries, and events exploring just how interested and prepared the nation is for U.S. global security leadership.

The partnership will launch at Defense One’s Defense Outlook 2020 policy summit, this Thursday, November 7, 2019, at the Conrad Hotel in Washington, D.C.

The premise for the American Readiness Project is that although the nation has shown a newfound interest in domestic politics and issues, the U.S. is much less ready, organized, equipped, informed, or eager to continue its role as the global security leader in the 21st century. Not in the way national security community leaders envision it. The U.S. military grows increasingly insular, diplomatic corps applications are down, government workforce and structures are outdated, and too few Americans are entering national security professions to staff the monumental security tasks required. Why? What needs to be done about it? We intend to find out.

“I’m very excited that CNAS has joined us for this project,” said Defense One Executive Editor Kevin Baron. “The bottom line is that there has been a political awakening in the United States since Donald Trump’s 2016 election, inspiring Americans of all stripes to get involved and interested in many important issues. But that awakening seems mostly to stop at the border. We have candidates on the left and right openly calling for a U.S. retreat from its global presence and influence, and yet bipartisan national security leaders scream for the opposite. We need to understand this division better, and find out what Americans really think about U.S. global security leadership, and what they’re doing about it in their own fields. We’ll send reporters across the country to highlight how Americans across sectors are working in their own ways to be part of U.S. global security leadership, in government, at schools, factory floors, boardrooms and technology labs — even in Hollywood, and we’ll feature commentaries from top thinkers about solutions for the future.”

Richard Fontaine, CNAS CEO, said, “Today, Washington sees a rare bipartisan consensus: that the world has entered a new era of great-power competition. How to posture the United States for this competition garners far less agreement. More important than the headlines and talking points is shoring up the American advantages we have benefitted from over the last several decades. The foundations of American power are strong, but a powerful military, innovative economy, and strong alliances are neither preordained nor permanent. The United States' readiness to compete in this era will rely on investments and reforms that cut across multiple domains and demand both practical policy fixes and winning narratives. CNAS is pleased to cooperate with Defense One on this effort to bring diverse views and pragmatic fact-based analysis aimed at strengthening American competitiveness.”

About Defense One

Defense One is a digital and events media brand informing the U.S. defense and national security leadership community by delivering news, breaking analysis, and ideas on the topics and trends defining the future of defense and national security. Produced by Government Executive Media Group of Atlantic Media, Defense One offers new voices and innovative, fearless commentary while providing national security leaders, influential professionals, stakeholders, and interested citizens across the defense spectrum with the information that they need to know.

About CNAS

The Center for a New American Security (CNAS) is an independent and bipartisan research institution that develops strong, pragmatic, and principled national security and defense policies. CNAS leads efforts to help inform and prepare the national security leaders of today and tomorrow.