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  • Backgrounder posted March 16, 2015 by Steven P. Bucci, Ph.D., Dean Cheng, Brian Slattery, Theodore R. Bromund, Ph.D., Michaela Dodge, Luke Coffey, David Inserra, Charles "Cully" Stimson 10 Objectives for the FY 2016 National Defense Authorization Act

    The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) is a central piece of legislation for Congress each year. Not only has the NDAA been passed 53 years in a row, it is one of the last remaining bills that enjoys true bipartisan consensus. The annual legislation has been able to rise above the political fray in part because Congress understands the critical need to set defense…

  • Commentary posted March 3, 2015 by Michaela Dodge Is America's Nuclear Arsenal Dying?

    As Russia and other nations around the world flex their “nuclear muscles,” when it comes to the United States, maintaining a credible nuclear force is certainly a tough task. Challenges include: declining research, development and acquisition budgets; uncertain prospects for modernization, and an American public that lacks a clear understanding how nuclear weapons…

  • Commentary posted August 20, 2014 by Michaela Dodge Space-based Missile Defense: Advancing Creativity, Protecting Lives

    ‘To boldly go where no man has gone before.” So ended “The Captain’s Oath” that opened most episodes of “Star Trek.”  For years, Americans happily suspended disbelief to watch the crew of the starship Enterprise as they roamed the universe on an epic journey of discovery. Yet for decades, people considered the deployment of space-based missile defense to be the stuff of…

  • Commentary posted July 17, 2014 by Michaela Dodge American Missile Defense: Why Failure IS an Option

    Robert Gard and Philip Coyle label the U.S. Ground-Based Midcourse Defense (GMD) system a “mistake,” despite last month’s successful intercept of a target missile. The system has not infrequently failed tests in the past, you see. And so they appear to argue: When the system fails a test, it proves it is not good enough. And when the system succeeds, it proves that the…

  • Backgrounder posted June 16, 2014 by Michaela Dodge Why Canada Should Join the U.S. Missile Defense Program: Ballistic Missiles Threaten Both Countries

    Canada and the United States have shared a special relationship for decades. Cooperation between these neighbors has resulted in one of the most successful international partnerships in history. A significant amount of this relationship has involved security cooperation, with Canada participating in the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD). Despite the many…

  • Lecture posted May 15, 2014 by Michaela Dodge The U.S. Missile Defense Program: An Opportunity for Canadian International Leadership

    Thank you for the opportunity to testify on the vitally important subject of the importance of ballistic missile defense in the current security environment and on the benefits of ballistic missile defense cooperation between Canada and the United States. I would like to concentrate on the key issues that, in my judgment, the Canadian government should consider with…

  • Commentary posted May 14, 2014 by Michaela Dodge Canadians deserve missile defences

    They share the world’s longest border, so it’s a darn good thing the United States and Canada have one of the best national security relationships in modern history. Their partnership has produced more than 2,500 defence agreements addressing everything from data sharing to free trade. Unfortunately, agreement is conspicuously absent on one vital issue: protecting…

  • Issue Brief posted March 27, 2014 by Michaela Dodge U.S. Nuclear Weapons Policy: After Ukraine, Time to Reassess Strategic Posture

    Russia recently invaded Ukraine and annexed Crimea in blatant disregard of Ukraine’s territorial sovereignty. Russia’s willingness to challenge the status quo and its disregard for its arms control obligations have important implications for U.S. nuclear weapons policy. The U.S. can take many steps to improve and strengthen its overall nuclear posture regardless of…

  • Issue Brief posted March 21, 2014 by Michaela Dodge U.S. Missile Defense Policy After Russia’s Actions in Ukraine

    Russia has invaded Ukraine and annexed Crimea in blatant disregard of Ukraine’s territorial sovereignty and international law. Russia’s crude steps carry important implications for U.S. missile defense policy. Currently, the Administration’s policy is not to affect the “strategic balance” with Russia in terms of ballistic missiles.[1] In reality, there is no strategic…

  • Backgrounder posted March 19, 2014 by Michaela Dodge, Steven P. Bucci, Ph.D., The Heritage Foundation Defense Experts 12 Issues for Congress in the 2015 National Defense Authorization Act

    Two key bills guide the policies of the U.S. Department of Defense: (1) the appropriations bill, which provides defense funding, and (2) the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which sets policies and guidelines for how the money will be spent. The NDAA has been the only bill that has made it to the President’s desk for his signature each year over the past…

  • Backgrounder posted February 18, 2014 by Michaela Dodge U.S. Nuclear Weapons in Europe: Critical for Transatlantic Security

    Since the end of the Cold War, the U.S. nuclear weapons posture has undergone a dramatic change. The U.S. has withdrawn about 90 percent of its forward-deployed nuclear weapons from Europe. In 2012, the Obama Administration initiated the Life Extension Program (LEP) for the B61 tactical nuclear weapon, which is the last nuclear weapon the U.S. keeps in Europe and the only…

  • Commentary posted January 29, 2014 by Michaela Dodge 5 Pressing Priorities for the Pentagon Budget

    Washington’s annual appropriations circus will start soon, and there’s lots of work to be done — especially in the realm of defense. Two rounds of automatic cuts arising from budget sequestration, compounded by earlier cuts requested by President Obama, have taken a toll at the Pentagon. Army Chief of Staff Ray Odierno recently said readiness levels are now the lowest…

  • Issue Brief posted January 15, 2014 by Steven P. Bucci, Ph.D., Michaela Dodge Top Five National Security Priorities for Congress in 2014

    America is dramatically less safe and prosperous than when President Obama took office. Threats to the nation have increased as the President’s “leading from behind” strategy only caused the U.S. to lose respect and influence on every front. U.S. adversaries became more emboldened. As a result of President Obama’s poor leadership, the U.S. will have to face the return of…

  • Issue Brief posted December 11, 2013 by Michaela Dodge, Ariel Cohen, Ph.D. Russia’s Arms Control Violations: What the U.S. Should Do

    This past June, President Obama called for another round of nuclear weapons reductions by stating that he intends to “seek negotiated cuts with Russia to move beyond Cold War nuclear postures.”[1] The United States has already moved beyond its Cold War nuclear posture. Since the end of the Cold War, the U.S. has cut the number of its deployed strategic nuclear weapons by…

  • Issue Brief posted November 20, 2013 by Michaela Dodge International Security Demands U.S. Intercontinental-Range Missiles

    Since the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) entered into force in February 2011, the U.S. has borne a significant majority of the nuclear arms reductions required under the treaty. Russia, the other party to the treaty, has been increasing the number of its deployed nuclear weapons and delivery vehicles, which the treaty allows. Now, according to a…