All in-depth research & reports

Report

Mar 7, 2024

Stealth, speed, and adaptability: The role of special operations forces in strategic competition

By Clementine G. Starling and Alyxandra Marine

Clementine G. Starling and Alyxandra Marine discuss how special operations forces enhance US readiness in an era of strategic competition.

Conflict Defense Policy

Issue Brief

Feb 21, 2024

This year’s bipartisan immigration bill offers a border blueprint for 2025

By Thomas S. Warrick

The consequences of another year of inaction on border security and immigration policy may convince a supermajority in the Congress to take up again in 2025 many of the ideas in this year’s bipartisan Senate compromise—no matter which party captures the White House in November.

Mexico Migration

Report

Feb 2, 2024

Requirements for nuclear deterrence and arms control in a two-nuclear-peer environment

By Greg Weaver and Amy Woolf

Gregory Weaver and Amy Woolf discuss the future of US nuclear posture and arms control, as the United States will soon face two adversaries with peer nuclear arsenals.

Arms Control China

Report

Jan 16, 2024

Atlantic Council Commission on Defense Innovation Adoption: Final report

By Whitney M. McNamara, Peter Modigliani, Matthew MacGregor, and Eric Lofgren*

The DoD must accelerate defense innovation adoption from the leading edge of the private sector. This report has ten recommendations to do so and features eight vignettes that explore how these actions may play out in practice.

Artificial Intelligence Defense Policy

Strategic Insights Memo

Dec 20, 2023

Expanding NATO’s competitive mindset: Deterring and defending across physical and virtual domains

By Delharty Manson

In October 2023, the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security’s Forward Defense program, in partnership with NATO ACT, convened current and former practitioners for a private workshop on expanding NATO’s approach to multi-domain operations (MDO), identifying key challenges and opportunities to operationalizing MDO across the Alliance. This memo summarizes the workshop’s key takeaways and conclusions.

Crisis Management Defense Policy

Report

Dec 20, 2023

Evolving cooperative security approaches for tomorrow’s realities

By John T. Watts

US security cooperation, which are military aid activities led or executed by the US Department of Defense, is immensely valuable if done right and can help the United States achieve its goal from the 2022 National Security Strategy (NSS) by building a strong coalition of allies to confront shared challenges.

Defense Policy National Security

Report

Dec 12, 2023

A maritime blockade of Taiwan by the People’s Republic of China: A strategy to defeat fear and coercion

By Marek Jestrab

Marek Jestrab considers a naval blockade of Taiwan by the People’s Republic of China and advances recommendations for the United States, Taiwan, and likeminded nations to resist and respond to a blockade.

China Conflict
Image for Deliberate nuclear use in a war over Taiwan: Scenarios and considerations for the United States

Report

Nov 30, 2023

Deliberate nuclear use in a war over Taiwan: Scenarios and considerations for the United States

By Matthew Kroenig

Matthew Kroenig argues the US and the PRC would have incentives to use nuclear weapons in a Taiwan war. The US must deter PRC nuclear use.

Arms Control China

Report

Nov 25, 2023

Ten challenges to implementing Force Design 2030

By Bruce Stubbs

Bruce Stubbs points out key questions for the success of the US Marine Corps’s Force Design 2030.

China Defense Policy

Issue Brief

Nov 22, 2023

The role of nuclear weapons in a Taiwan crisis

By Gregory Weaver

Nuclear deterrence would be key in a Taiwan crisis, in part because a PLA amphibious fleet would be vulnerable to a US nuclear strike.

China Conflict

Issue Brief

Nov 15, 2023

US homeland missile defense: Room for expanded roles

By Robert Soofer and Matthew Costlow

Matthew Costlow & Robert Soofer explore how expanded roles for US homeland missile defense could enhance deterrence with two nuclear peers

China Defense Policy

Issue Brief

Oct 13, 2023

Where do US Army special operations fit in a world of strategic competition?

By Richard Angle, Leo Blanken, and Philip Swintek

General Richard Angle, Leo Blanken, and Lieutenant Colonel Philip Swintek argue that building and maintaining relationships is the true competitive advantage of Army Special Forces (ARSOF).

Defense Policy National Security

Report

Oct 4, 2023

The sixth domain: The role of the private sector in warfare

By Franklin D. Kramer

The private sector is the “sixth domain” of modern warfare, argues Frank Kramer, and the government should act to protect it.

Artificial Intelligence Cybersecurity

Issue Brief

Sep 11, 2023

The draft ended fifty years ago. Can the all-volunteer force survive another fifty?

By James L. Jones, Jr., Arnold Punaro

Retired Marine Corps Generals James L. Jones and Arnold Punaro argue that in its current form the United States’ all-volunteer force is on an unsustainable path.

Civil Society Defense Policy

Strategic Insights Memo

Aug 18, 2023

Employing artificial intelligence and the edge continuum for joint operations

By James E. Cartwright and Jags Kandasamy

In Spring 2023, experts from the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security’s Forward Defense program and Latent AI convened for discussions on employing artificial intelligence for joint operations. This memo builds upon takeaways and insights gleaned from those meetings.

Artificial Intelligence Defense Technologies

Report

Aug 14, 2023

How modern militaries are leveraging AI

By Tate Nurkin, Julia Siegel

Tate Nurkin and Julia Siegel explore the implications of incorporating artificial intelligence into military operations and the challenges of the US Department of Defense’s adoption of human-machine teaming.

Defense Industry Defense Policy

Report

Jul 7, 2023

Building a navy fighting machine

By Bruce Stubbs

Bruce Stubbs explores the barriers impeding the US Navy’s approach to strategy development and force planning and offers recommendations for reform.

Defense Industry Defense Policy

Report

Jun 8, 2023

Operationalizing integrated deterrence: Applying joint force targeting across the competition continuum

By Gen James Cartwright, USMC (ret.), Lt Col Justin M. Conelli, USAF, Clementine G. Starling, and Julia Siegel

General James E. Cartwright, Lieutenant Colonel Justin M. Conelli, Clementine G. Starling, and Julia Siegel advance a framework for operationalizing integrated deterrence.

China Defense Industry

Issue Brief

Jun 1, 2023

Autonomy and asymmetry: The future of Norway’s defense 2022-2042

By August Cole

August Cole provides an in-depth examination of Norway’s potential defense strategies, the implications of autonomous drones and artificial intelligence, and the necessary transformation of military norms in response to the threats from Russia and beyond.

Defense Policy Eastern Europe

Issue Brief

May 22, 2023

Roles of the chairman and vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff

By Arnold Punaro

Major General Arnold Punaro, USMC (ret.) gives an inside look on evolution of the GNA, what factors make for a successful chairman and vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and the “unfinished business” of the reforms that led to the creation of the CJCS office.

Defense Policy National Security

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Forward Defense, housed within the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security, generates ideas and connects stakeholders in the defense ecosystem to promote an enduring military advantage for the United States, its allies, and partners. Our work identifies the defense strategies, capabilities, and resources the United States needs to deter and, if necessary, prevail in future conflict.