Power Projection Strategy: New Directions for Forward Defense   [open pdf - 2MB]

From the thesis abstract: "The future of forward defense and the extensive overseas network of bases, as a component of U.S. power projection strategy, are considered in light of a changing international strategic environment. The assertion is made that several factors--among them global political change and domestic fiscal trends-- are creating a vulnerability in national security strategy by causing a retreat from forward defense while limiting improvements to strategic mobility assets. The case is argued that forward defense is a vital component of national security strategy and should remain so. The advantages of U.S. forward defense strategy are examined from historical, geopolitical, and contemporary operational perspectives. The proposed 'new directions' acknowledge that retrenchment and change are likely in the post-Cold War world, yet strategy formulation should not be driven strictly by external forces. Key concepts for the revised policy include: the defense of interests, guarantees of access, and 'local partners.' A specific recommendation for the DoD outlines the need for regional information centers to further support the reduced foreign access envisioned in the post-Cold War clime. A new, well-coordinated, and credible policy for forward defense in the post-Cold War environment is an imperative for future national security planners."

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