A top priority for the next President of the United States must be to demonstrate the strength and confidence to protect the nation’s vital interests at home and abroad. These vital interests are: (1) defense of the homeland; (2) prevention or successful conclusion of a major war with the potential to destabilize regions of critical interest to the U.S.; and (3) preservation of freedom of movement within the global commons: the sea, the air, cyberspace, and outer space domains through which the world conducts business.
There is clearly a need to do something different. The Heritage Foundation’s Index of U.S. Military Strength graded the ability of the United States to protect its vital interests as “marginal,” an assessment that reflects both deteriorating U.S. capabilities and rising concerns in key parts of the world. Further, it is clear that this Administration’s approach to defense and foreign policy is deeply flawed. In practice, it has served the nation poorly. Continue reading