National Security

Where are the Carriers? U.S. National Strategy and the Choices Ahead

  Executive Summary As the United States seeks to prepare for a potential conflict with a peer-level adversary, the debate around the utility of the aircraft carrier—and its role in such a contingency—once again has resurfaced. Since the carrier’s...

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Dueling Dyads: Conceptualizing Proxy Wars in Strategic Competition

Strategic competition with the Russian Federation and People’s Republic of China has become the new orienting challenge for the U.S. national security community. While many officials and writers envision strategic competition across many domains, the increased likelihood of proxy...

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What Will the Terrorism Landscape Look Like in a Taliban-Led Afghanistan?

The Taliban’s recent capture of Kabul has the group poised to take back control over Afghanistan. Without question, a Taliban-led Afghanistan is going to be a hospitable operating environment for terrorists, insurgents, and militias of various stripes. But not...

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Russia is Hammering the U.S. in Cyberspace, Why is Biden Meeting with Putin at All?

In 2009, while working in Washington, D.C., I remember the issue of Russian criminal syndicate hacking arising for the first time. Discussions about an appropriate measured response—one that would deter criminal hacking groups in places like Russia—quickly led to...

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How China Seized the Initiative on Blockchain and Digital Currency

Global information networks are undergoing unprecedented innovation, driven in large part by the emergence of disruptive technologies such as artificial intelligence, the internet of things, and 5G. Unfortunately for the United States, two other critical, but underappreciated, components of...

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The Tension Between Secrecy and Innovation

One of the most harmful effects of China’s cyber espionage and from whistleblowers who publish classified information is the bureaucratic response that it triggers. Most agencies double down on secrecy. They install software to track access, monitor online behavior,...

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U.S. Force Structure Changes in Europe: Necessary, but not Sufficient

The recently announced decision to increase the U.S. military presence in Europe by sending 500 additional troops to Germany in the coming months is the right move at the right time in the right place. This announcement implements President...

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The Evolution and Escalation of the Islamic State Threat to Mozambique

When Islamist insurgents laid siege to the coastal town of Palma in gas-rich northeastern Mozambique on March 24, leaving dozens dead, including several foreigners, the story received international attention. The insurgency in Mozambique is being waged by a group...

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Building Soft Power Back Better?

The Biden administration has multiple competing priorities: COVID-19 and its economic impacts, long-ignored racial fissures, and a growing tenuous relationship with truth, reality, and trust among the populace, just to name a few. President Joseph Biden also has the...

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Jihadist Groups in Sub-Saharan Africa: Assessing the Threat

As the Biden administration surveys the litany of foreign policy challenges that exist—Iran, China, Russia, and North Korea, to name a few—counterterrorism in sub-Saharan Africa likely falls outside of its top priorities. Throughout the Trump administration, there were high-level...

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