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HomeGeopolitical CompassThe AmericasU.S. Military Forces in FY 2019 The Buildup and Its Limits

U.S. Military Forces in FY 2019 The Buildup and Its Limits

Author:  Mark F. Cancian 

Organization/Publisher:  CSIS International Security Program 

Date/Place:  2018, U.S.

Type of Literature: Report 

Number of Pages: 78  

Link : 


The future U.S administrations would have to balance between modernization (capability) and force structure (capacity), and the former was chosen. Yet, according to the author, the Administration has not allocated enough budget to do so. The report advises the administration with three things: (a) to increase production of current systems to achieve modernization, (b) to increase capabilities by upgrading systems, and (c) to expand force structures. The report then provides four critical points: (a) that the defense budget is not enough, (b) the lack of force expansion, (c) that there is too much focus on great power conflict, and (d) that the strategy was too forward engaged. In addition, several risk factors were included such as the lack of real growth in future budgets, the possible return of budget caps, and the uncertainty of public and political support. The rest of the report details what should be done to meet the goals of engagement strategy in each military branch, the general theme of which is the call for expansion of manpower to expand responses to challenges and crises while attempting to keep the technological edge over other powers, especially China. The report reflects clearly the urge to maintain the primacy of the United States and to keep the balance of power in its favor. 



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