Goldwater-Nichols at 30: Defense Reform and Issues for Congress [June 2, 2016]   [open pdf - 1MB]

"Thirty years after its enactment, Congress has undertaken a review of the Goldwater-Nichols Department of Defense Reorganization Act (GNA) as well as the broader organization and structure of the contemporary Department of Defense (DOD) more broadly. Most observers agree that in principle a comprehensive review of the Goldwater-Nichols legislation is warranted at this juncture. Further, a broad consensus appears to exist among observers that DOD must become considerably more agile while retaining its strength in order to enable the United States to meet a variety of critical emerging national security challenges. Agreement seemingly ends there. There appears to be little consensus on what should be changed within DOD and what specific direction reform ought to take. Discussions have begun to coalesce around a number of proposals, including reforming defense acquisition processes, further strengthening the Joint Staff, reducing Pentagon staffs, and better empowering the services in the joint arena. Ideas vary, however, on how, specifically, to achieve those outcomes. Disagreement also exists as to whether or not reorganizing DOD alone will be sufficient. Some observers maintain that a reform of the broader interagency system on national security matters is needed. […] This report is intended to assist Congress as it evaluates the variety of reform proposals currently under discussion around Washington."

Report Number:
CRS Report for Congress, R44474
Public Domain
Retrieved From:
Federation of American Scientists: http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/index.html
Media Type:
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