Improvements in adversaries’ conventional and nuclear capabilities is shifting the balance of power and eroding strategic stability. The CNAS Defense Program aims to explore options to strengthen deterrence and prevent escalation through the following projects:
Nuclear Deterrence and Escalation Management
Great power competition among nuclear-armed powers has called into question the assumption that nuclear weapons will not be used in combat. This line of effort considers what is needed to enhance deterrence against multiple nuclear armed adversaries, manage escalation in the context of a conventional conflict, and how to mitigate risk.
The U.S. military posture—its forces, bases, and activities—not only enables rapid responses to crises but is also critical for extended deterrence. Yet a smaller American force struggles to meet the global demands for presence, while adversaries’ growing long-range precision strike capabilities hold U.S. bases and forces at risk. This line of effort seeks develop concepts to better manage the limited pool of American troops and their footprint overseas, while enhancing their survivability and ability to project power to strengthen deterrence by denial.
Risky Business: Future Strategy and Force Options for the Defense Department
To consider the next defense strategy and the tradeoffs associated with different options, we developed three possible strategies—high-end deterrence, day-to-day competition, ...
By Stacie Pettyjohn, Becca Wasser & Jennie Matuschak
The Unmet Promise of the Global Posture Review
The review missed an opportunity to realign U.S. military presence overseas with the strategic priorities laid out in the interim National Security Strategic Guidance....
By Becca Wasser
Spiking the Problem: Developing a Resilient Posture in the Indo-Pacific With Passive Defenses
This article originally appeared in War on the Rocks....
By Stacie Pettyjohn