November 03, 2014

America's Secret Weapon for Battlefield Dominance: Build the Swarm

By Paul Scharre

The U.S. military is at a crisis point. We are staring down the barrel of a future where U.S. military technological superiority may no longer be a given wherethe military strength that has undergirded global security since World War II may be in question. The technologies that have given the U.S. military its edge stealth, long-range sensors, communications networks and precision-guided weapons are proliferating to other actors. As a result, so-called “anti-access” challenges threaten traditional modes of power projection. While individual U.S. ships, planes and tanks remain more capable one-on-one, the pernicious “death spiral” of rising costs and shrinking procurement quantities means that the United States has increasingly fewer and fewer assets to bring to the fight. The U.S. military will have to fight significantly outnumbered, and even the qualitative advantages U.S. assets have will not be sufficient. Quality matters, but numbers matter too. At a certain point, U.S. aircraft and ships will simply run out of missiles.

Read the full article at The National Interest.