The Trump administration’s defense-budget increase should come as welcome news to Asian countries worried about mounting threats to regional order. A $54 billion boost this year would improve U.S. military readiness and pay for investments in new platforms and innovative technologies.
The Pentagon is now at work on the details, and the precise contours of its submission to Congress remain a work in progress. As the process unfolds, the administration should use the opportunity to reassure key Asian nations.
Security challenges in the Asia-Pacific are rising. North Korea continues to make advances in ballistic missiles and nuclear warheads, and the day is nearing when Pyongyang can deliver a nuclear payload to the continental U.S. China’s two-decade program of military modernization continues, and Beijing has made major investments in anti-access and area-denial capabilities aimed at backing U.S. forces away from the western Pacific. Russia has become more regionally active, conducting joint exercises with China’s navy in the South China Sea and reportedly establishing a strategic bomber division for Pacific patrols.
Read the full article at The Wall Street Journal.
More from CNAS
CommentarySharper: Day One
The Biden-Harris administration will confront a range of national security challenges from the moment it takes office....
By Chris Estep
ReportsNavigating the Deepening Russia-China Partnership
In virtually every dimension of their relationship, cooperation between Beijing and Moscow has increased....
By Andrea Kendall-Taylor & David Shullman
The COVID-19 pandemic has shined a light on a new challenge to the information ecosystem: the increasing convergence of Russian and Chinese information operations....
By Andrea Kendall-Taylor
CommentaryHarnessing Multilateralism for Digital Development
Uneven access to digital technology is magnifying societal inequities around the world....
By Kristen A. Cordell & Kristine Lee