Foreign Policy Research Institute A Nation Must Think Before it Acts Defense Showstoppers: National Security Challenges for the Obama Administration

Defense Showstoppers: National Security Challenges for the Obama Administration

Date : Thu., February 12, 2009 9:00 am to 4:45 pm Category : FPRI in D.C.

The Obama Administration will face numerous challenges to U.S. national security. Among these, several stand out for their potential as “showstoppers,” where, if the challenge is not met, the U.S. may suffer a strategic loss of capability:

  • What is the proper balance between counterinsurgency and traditional military formations in our planning?
  • With respect to the procurement process, the defense industrial base, and the budget, are we short-changing the future?
  • Can the U.S. meet its responsibilities with the current active-reserve structure? And if not, how?
  • Seven years into the Long War, how can we improve coordination among Defense, State, the CIA, and others?

In this conference, our objective is to set forth clearly the actions needed to sustain America’s defense capability.

Topics and Speakers

Opening Remarks

Lt. Gen. Dennis McCarthy

USMC, Ret. and Executive Director, ROA

Harvey Sicherman

President, FPRI

Panel 1: How Will We Fight? (Roles and Missions)

T.X. Hammes


Stephen Biddle


Senior Fellow for Defense Policy, Council on Foreign Relations

Roger D. Carstens


Senior Fellow, Center for a New American Security

Michael Horowitz


Assistant Professor of Political Science, University of Pennsylvania, and Senior Fellow, FPRI

Panel 2: At What Cost? (Procurement/Defense Budget)

Frank G. Hoffman


Research Fellow, Center for Emerging Threats and Opportunities, Marine Corps Combat Development Cmd.

Mackenzie Eaglen


Senior Policy Analyst for National Security, Heritage Foundation

Christopher Preble


CATO Institute

Michael P. Noonan


Director - Program on National Security

Luncheon Address

Gen. James Mattis(Ret.)


USMC, Supreme Allied Commander Transformation

Commander, U.S. Joint Forces Command

John Hillen


Member - FPRI Board of Trustees

Panel 3: Who Will Fight For Us? (Personnel)

Michael O’Hanlon


Senior Fellow, Foreign Policy, Brookings Institution

Senior Principal Researcher, RAND Corporation

Frederick W. Kagan


Resident Scholar, American Enterprise Institute

Mackubin Thomas Owens


Editor -

Associate Dean, U.S. Naval War College

Panel 4: Brother, do you have a DIME? (Interagency)

Janine Davidson


Assistant Professor of Public Policy, George Mason University

Ralph Peters



Hon. Thomas A. Schweich


Visiting Professor of Law and Ambassador in Residence, Washington University in St. Louis

Frank G. Hoffman


Research Fellow, Center for Emerging Threats and Opportunities, Marine Corps Combat Development Cmd.

Registration links

Register Deadline

Thu., February 12, 2009

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