America's Agenda For Global Military Domination


Major Strategic Documents

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For additional information see also the sections
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News & Comments

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Important Reports

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Major Strategic Documents

The National Intelligence Strategy of the United States of America (October 2005)

DoD: National Defense Strategy (NDS) 2005

DoD: National Military Strategy (NMS) 2004

National Counterintelligence Strategy of the United States

The National Security Strategy of the United States of America (September 2002)

DoD: Quadrennial Defense Review Report

PNAC: Rebuilding America's Defenses

FLASHBACK: Defense Strategy for the 1990s: The Regional Defense Strategy


Related Links

Federation of American Scientists

uhuh.com -- Exposing Corruption at the Federal Level

Very Pissed Off Combat Veterans -- And Blueprints For Change By John McCarthy

Agenda for The Empire

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Quadrennial Defense Review Report
 
 
September 30, 2001
 
 
Foreword

On September 11, 2001, the United States came under vicious, bloody attack. Americans died in their places of work. They died on American soil. They died not as combatants, but as innocent victims. They died not from traditional armies waging traditional campaigns, but from the brutal, faceless weapons of terror. They died as the victims of war - a war that many had feared but whose sheer horror took America by surprise.

The war the nation fights today is not a war of America's choosing. It is a war that was brought violently and brutally to America's shores by the evil forces of terror. It is a war against America and America's way of life. It is a war against all that America holds dear. It is a war against freedom itself.

The attack on the United States and the war that has been visited upon us highlights a fundamental condition of our circumstances: we cannot and will not know precisely where and when America's interests will be threatened, when America will come under attack, or when Americans might die as the result of aggression. We can be clear about trends, but uncertain about events. We can identify threats, but cannot know when or where America or its friends will be attacked. We should try mightily to avoid surprise, but we must also learn to expect it. We must constantly strive to get better intelligence, but we must also remember that there will
always be gaps in our intelligence. Adapting to surprise - adapting quickly and decisively - must therefore be a condition of planning.
 
The Quadrennial Defense Review was undertaken during a crucial time of transition to a new era. Even before the attack of September 11, 2001, the senior leaders of the Defense Department set out to establish a new strategy for America's defense that would embrace uncertainty and contend with surprise, a strategy premised on the idea that to be effective abroad, America must be safe at home. It sought to set the conditions to extend America's influence and preserve America's security. The strategy that results is built around four key goals that will guide the development of U.S. forces and capabilities, their deployment and use:
 

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Assuring allies and friends of the United States' steadiness of purpose and its capability to fulfill its security commitments;

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Dissuading adversaries from undertaking programs or operations that could threaten U.S. interests or those of our allies and friends;
 

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Deterring aggression and coercion by deploying forward the capacity to swiftly defeat attacks and impose severe penalties for aggression on an adversary's military capability and supporting infrastructure; and

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Decisively defeating any adversary if deterrence fails.
 
A central objective of the review was to shift the basis of defense planning from a "threat-based" model that has dominated thinking in the past to a "capabilities-based" model for the future. This capabilities-based model focuses more on how an adversary might fight rather than specifically whom the adversary might be or where a war might occur. It recognizes that it is not enough to plan for large conventional wars in distant theaters. Instead, the United States must identify the capabilities required to deter and defeat adversaries who will rely on surprise, deception, and asymmetric warfare to achieve their objectives.
 
Adopting this capabilities-based approach to planning requires that the nation maintain its military advantages in key areas while it develops new areas of military advantage and denies asymmetric advantages to adversaries. It entails adapting existing military capabilities to new circumstances, while experimenting with the development of new military capabilities. In short, it requires the transformation of U.S. forces, capabilities, and institutions to extend America's asymmetric advantages well into the future.
 
Transforming America's defense for the 21st century will require a longstanding commitment from our country and its leaders. Transformation is not a goal for tomorrow, but an endeavor that must be embraced in earnest today. The challenges the Nation faces do not loom in the distant future, but are here now. They involve protecting our critical bases of operation - including the most critical base of operation, the U.S. homeland - and projecting and sustaining U.S. forces in distant antiaccess environments. They entail assuring U.S. information systems and providing persistent surveillance, tracking, and rapid engagement of adversary forces and capabilities. They require enhancing the capability and survivability of U.S. space systems and leveraging information technology and new concepts to provide for more effective joint operations.
 
Of necessity, our efforts will begin relatively small, but will grow significantly in pace and intensity. And over time, the full promise of transformation will be realized as we divest ourselves of legacy forces and they move off the stage and resources move into new concepts, capabilities, and organizations that maximize our warfighting effectiveness and the combat potential of America's men and women in uniform. This will not be a simple task. It requires steadfastness of purpose and the freedom to manage effectively and efficiently. It will require new tools to manage the Defense Department and an overhaul of existing approaches.
 
To support the transformation of the U.S. Armed Forces and to better manage the full range of activities of the Defense Department, the Quadrennial Defense Review identified a new approach to assessing and managing risk. This new approach will help to ensure that the Department of Defense is better able to meet near-term threats even as it invests in capabilities needed to safeguard the nation's future security.
 
This Quadrennial Defense Review was the product of the senior civilian and military leadership of the Department of Defense. It benefited from extensive consultation with the President of the United States. It was truly "top down" in that the decisions taken on strategy, forces, capabilities, and risks resulted from months of deliberations and consultation among the most senior Defense Department leadership. This report outlines the key changes needed to preserve America's safety and security in the years to come.
 
The Quadrennial Defense Review and the accompanying report were largely completed before the September 11, 2001 terror attacks on the United States. In important ways, these attacks confirm the strategic direction and planning principles that resulted from this review, particularly its emphasis on homeland defense, on surprise, on preparing for asymmetric threats, on the need to develop new concepts of deterrence, on the need for a capabilities-based strategy, and on the need to balance deliberately the different dimensions of risk. However, the attack on the United States on September 11, 2001 will require us to move forward more rapidly in these directions, even while we are engaged in the war against terrorism.
 
The vast array of complex policy, operational, and even constitutional issues concerning how we organize and prepare to defend the American people are now receiving unprecedented attention throughout the United States government. Importantly, since the scope of homeland  security responsibilities span an array of federal, state, and local organizations, it also will require enhanced inter-agency processes and capabilities to effectively defend the United States against attacks. The recent establishment of the Office of Homeland Security will galvanize this vital effort.
 
Thus, this report represents not so much an end but a beginning. Even as this report is concluded, the Department of Defense is engaged in the process of reviewing and implementing the directions set forth here through the Defense Department's military planning and resource allocation processes. These efforts, in turn, will allow the Defense Department leadership the opportunity to build upon and refine the decisions taken as the result of this review.
 
Finally, the loss of life and damage to our economy from the attack of September 11, 2001 should give us a new perspective on the question of what this country can afford for its defense. It would be reckless to press our luck with false economies or gamble with our children's future. This nation can afford to spend what is needed to deter the adversaries of tomorrow and to underpin our prosperity. Those costs do not begin to compare with the cost in human lives and resources if we fail to do so.
 
As we contend with the difficult challenges of the war on terrorism, we must also proceed on the path of transforming America's defense. Our commitment to the nation will be unwavering and our purpose clear: to provide for the safety and well being of all Americans and to honor America's commitments worldwide. As in generations before, the skill of our armed forces, their devotion to duty, and their willingness to sacrifice are at the core of our nation's strength. We must provide them with the resources and support that they need to safeguard peace and security not only for our generation but for generations to come.
 
 
Donald H. Rumsfeld
Secretary of Defense
 
 
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