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Old 05-06-2017   #23
Bill Moore
Council Member
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 2,995
Default Paradigms a changing

As this thread matures I want to further explore the impact of changes in policy, technology, adversary stratagems, and environmental factors that will, or should, drive changes in our national strategy. Starting 2017 with an excellent study by Hal Brands that addresses the reality of the impact of our allies and partner's decline relative to our competitors, and his proposed changes to mitigate the negative impact of this trend.

It is important, because we too readily assume allies and partners will share more of our collective security burden, but as he points out they are increasingly unable to do so. One of the few bright points is Australia's increasing contributions, while one of the darker points is the special relationship between the UK and U.S. is risk based on UK's lack of defense capacity. The reality of these changes mandate changes in our assumptions, which in turn will change our strategy.

The first link is an article that summarizes the report (shamelessly stolen from the news roundup on SWJ today)

America’s Allies Are in Decline. Here’s How the US Should Adjust

Times change, however, and so has the global distribution of economic and military power. America’s closest and most powerful allies have seen their shares of global GDP and military power fall since the mid-1990s, due to slow or stagnant growth and—in Europe especially—prolonged disinvestment in defense. More broadly, U.S. allies in both Europe and the Asia-Pacific have seen their economic and military power decline relative to Russia and China, America’s most prominent rivals.
To be clear, this decline is no reason to abandon or deliberately undercut America’s alliances. Given the vital role that those alliances have long played in U.S. statecraft, this “cure” would be far worse than the disease. What the United States must do, rather, is to adapt its approach to alliance management in ways that mitigate the geopolitical effects of allied decline and bolster the global order that Washington has long used those alliances to uphold.
The article summarizes several key points, but I still recommending reading the entire report for those interested in the topic. It can be found at this link:
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