Written by Senior Fellows and Co-Directors of the Responsible Defense Program LTG David Barno, USA (Ret.) and Dr. Nora Bensahel, and Adjunct Senior Fellow M. Thomas Davis, the paper suggests alternatives as the Navy balances emerging threats, shrinking resources and enduring global responsibilities. The authors write that “the Navy needs a resource-informed strategic approach to the next carrier air wing that accounts for the fact that the operational environment of the 2020s and 2030s could involve very different threats, technologies and capabilities.”
In view of this challenging environment, the authors chart four general options for the Navy as it balances the need to upgrade current capabilities, invest in networked warfare and develop unmanned systems. Although declining defense budgets will frame these choices, the authors argue that “Navy leaders would need to critically examine their choices for how to best shape the carrier air wing of the future even if resources were unconstrained.”
More from CNAS
CommentarySharper: The Budget
The defense budget and its $715 million price tag accounts for much of the U.S. government's discretionary spending every year, but where will (and should) this money go in th...
By Anna Pederson
VideoThree elements of Army’s iron triangle equally critical for United States, says defense analyst
Billy Fabian, adjunct senior fellow for the Defense Program at the Center for a New American Security and senior analyst at Govini discusses the Army's iron triangle on Govern...
By Billy Fabian
Congressional TestimonyThe Fiscal Year 2022 Defense Budget and Future Options for the Pentagon
Submitted Written Testimony I. Introduction Chairman Smith, Ranking Member Rodgers, distinguished members of the committee and staff thank you for inviting me to testify today...
By Stacie Pettyjohn
ReportsRisky Business: Future Strategy and Force Options for the Defense Department
Executive Summary Despite the overarching strategic priorities laid out by the Biden administration and initial indicators provided by the Department of Defense (DoD), it is u...
By Stacie Pettyjohn, Becca Wasser & Jennie Matuschak