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Contents

Key Findings

CHAPTER ONE
The Global Environment

SHAPING THE SECURITY ENVIRONMENT

CHAPTER TWO
Instruments for Shaping

CHAPTER THREE
Asia

CHAPTER FOUR
Greater Middle East

CHAPTER FIVE
Europe

CHAPTER SIX
The New Independent States

CHAPTER SEVEN
The Americas

CHAPTER EIGHT
Sub-Saharan Africa

RESPONDING TO OPERATIONAL REQUIREMENTS

CHAPTER NINE
Major Theater War

CHAPTER TEN
Small-Scale Contingencies

CHAPTER ELEVEN
Asymmetric Threats

CHAPTER TWELVE
Nuclear Weapons

CHAPTER THIRTEEN
Nonstate Threats

PREPARING FOR CHANGE

CHAPTER FOURTEEN
Alternative Futures

CHAPTER FIFTEEN
Adapting Forces

CHAPTER SIXTEEN
Future Posture

CHAPTER SEVENTEEN
Conclusion

Acronyms


 

Strategic Assessment 1998

Engaging Power for Peace

NATIONAL DEFENSE UNIVERSITY

INSTITUTE FOR NATIONAL STRATEGIC STUDIES

NATIONAL DEFENSE UNIVERSITY

President: Lieutenant General Richard A. Chilcoat, U.S. Army

Vice President: Ambassador Thomas M. T. Niles

STRATEGIC ASSESSMENT 1998

Editor-in-Chief: Hans Binnendijk

General Editor: David C. Gompert

Managing Editor: James L. Zackrison

Fort Lesley J. McNair, Washington, DC 203195066

Phone: (202) 6853838; Fax: (202) 6853972

Cleared for public release. Distribution unlimited.

Digital imagery on pages ii and iii courtesy of NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center,
Earth Sciences Directorate

Printed in the United States of America

For sale by the U.S. Government Printing Office

Superintendent of Documents, Mail Stop: SSOP,
Washington, DC 204029328

Preface

By LIEUTENANT GENERAL RICHARD A. CHILCOAT, U.S. ARMY
President, National Defense University

Over the past few years the Department of Defense has been intensifying its study of the global security situation, U.S. force posture, and future defense requirements. The National Defense University contributes to this dialogue through Strategic Assessment, an annual publication which applies the expertise of this institution through the leadership of its interdisciplinary research arm, the Institute for National Strategic Studies, with the assistance of specialists from elsewhere in government and academe. Offering such analyses, in both general and particular areas of interest to the national security community, is an important aspect of the NDU mission. This volume examines various approaches that the United States might adopt to shape the strategic environment of the future.

The current environment is characterized by instability and change. The U.S. Government needs to apply the full range of options at its disposal to achieve national goals and ensure the peace and stability required to preserve our rights to "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness." But such options must be studied and conceptualized for years (and in some cases, decades) in advance to take advantage of the opportunities presented by a changing global environment.

The recent Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) recommended a series of defense posture changes. This volume reviews these recommendations and takes the next analytical step, to propose what is entailed by such changes. Strategic Assessment 1998: Engaging Power for Peace should prove useful beyond the defense establishment, to all readers with an interest in national security affairs. We emphasize that this report is not a statement of official policy, nor does it represent the views of the Department of Defense or the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Rather than to state policy, the role of National Defense University is to stimulate discussion and research among both policymakers and analysts.

Foreword

By HANS BINNENDIJK and DAVID C. GOMPERT

This is the fourth volume in the annual Strategic Assessment series produced by the Institute for National Strategic Studies at the National Defense University, and undertaken to contribute to the national effort to understand more clearly the nature of, and the U.S. role in, the new international system. This volume complements the Strategic Forum series (issue papers on key national security topics), Joint Force Quarterly (a professional military journal published for the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs), and other titles issued by INSS. While Strategic Assessment is not an official government publication, we trust that it will inform and influence policymakers and academics alike.

Each previous volume has had a specific theme. Strategic Assessment 1995: U.S. Security Challenges in Transition described a new international system which held much promise and new security concerns for the United States. Some of the first volume's conclusions were:

Strategic Assessment 1996: Instruments of U.S. Power reviewed 15 different types of means of exercising U.S. power (ranging from the diplomat in the field to the nuclear weapon in its silo) and analyzed their capabilities and relevance in the post-Cold War era. Despite real budget reductions of more than one-third over the previous decade, both U.S. defense and international affairs instruments were rapidly adapted to meet many of the new challenges identified in the volume published last year. But the budget cuts were concentrated in areas like defense procurement and security assistance, which, if not reversed, could cause lasting damage to our national interests. Some of the specific conclusions of this second volume were:

Strategic Assessment 1997: Flashpoints and Force Structure categorized key strategic focal points as major powers, regional contingencies, troubled states, and transitions problems. The volume concluded that the "two nearly simultaneous Major Regional Contingencies" concept had become a less useful primary planning scenario than in 1993. The study suggested a broader basis for the Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR), and then assessed three alternative force structures. Some specific conclusions drawn were:

With regard to force structure alternatives, Strategic Assessment 1997 analyzed the following:

No alternative was recommended, but it was clear from the threat analysis that the full spectrum force model was preferable if the budget financing could be found.

This background was used to prepare Strategic Assessment 1998: Engaging Power for Peace. Many of the conclusions drawn in earlier volumes in this series found resonance in the report of the Quadrennial Defense Review, signed by Secretary of Defense William Cohen in May of 1997. The QDR looked at three military challenges facing the United States: shaping the strategic environment, responding to aggression, and preparing now for an uncertain future. It recommended a force structure somewhere between the recapitalization and full spectrum force models laid out in last year's assessment. This year's volume is organized under the rubrics of shaping, responding, and preparing, in order to amplify and extend the QDR conclusions.

Acknowledgments

Responsibility for any errors found in this document rests wholly with the editors. Credit for all insights belongs to the able team of analysts who contributed the various chapters. The principal authors include:

Global Environment, David C. Gompert, INSS

Instruments for Shaping, David C. Gompert, INSS
      Textbox on Space, William Gillen and Rudy Veit, U.S. Space Command

Asia, Ronald N. Montaperto, INSS
      Textbox on Indian Ocean Region, Nancy Anderson, INSS

Greater Middle East, Patrick M. Clawson, INSS

Europe, Jeffrey Simon and Sean Kay, INSS

The New Independent States, John Tedstrom, The RAND Corporation

The Americas, James L. Zackrison, INSS, and Kimberley Thachuk, Simon Fraser University

Sub-Saharan Africa, James Woods, Cohen and Woods International

Major Theater War, Richard L. Kugler, INSS

Small-Scale Contingencies, Robert B. Oakley, INSS

Asymmetric Threats, Peter Wilson, The RAND Corporation

Nuclear Weapons, Michael Nacht, University of Maryland

Nonstate Threats, Patrick M. Clawson, INSS

Alternative Futures, Martin C. Libicki, INSS

Adapting Forces, Martin C. Libicki, INSS
      Textbox on Space, William Gillen and Rudy Veit, U.S. Space Command

Future Posture, Martin C. Libicki, INSS

Conclusions, David C. Gompert, INSS

Thanks are also due to many military officers, civilian officials, and outside analysts who provided thoughtful comments on early drafts of this volume. Special thanks go to James Zackrison, who served as managing editor during the initial stages of this project; Ron Nazzaro, who conducted background research and produced the graphics; Patrick Clawson and Ellin Sarot for their editorial input and review; members of the INSS staff for their assistance, including James Swihart, Walter Vanderbeek, and James Brusstar; Jerry McGinn, research assistant at The RAND Corporation; Erwin Godoy, INSS research assistant; and William Rawley, Kathy Goldynia, Deborah Rhode, and other members of the Typography and Design Division at the U.S. Government Printing Office. Finally, the editorial staff of the Publication Directorate within INSS under the supervision of
Robert Silano proofed the final version of the volume and saw it through the final stages of production.

Strategic Assessment 1998 is neither a statement nor a critique of U.S. Government policy. The opinions, conclusions, and recommendations, either expressed or implied, are solely those of the contributors. They do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Defense University, the Department of Defense, or any other agency of the U.S. Government.

Research and writing for Strategic Assessment 1998 was completed in late 1997 and revised to include developments through the end of March 1998.