White Houses Releases National Security Strategy Report On January 5, the White House released a 71-page report entitled, "A National Security Strategy for a New Century." This report is required by a Defense Department reorganization law passed in 1986. The document preface states "we are pursuing a forward- looking national security strategy for the new century. This report...sets forth that strategy. Its three core objectives are: To enhance America's security. To bolster America's economic prosperity. To promote democracy and human rights abroad."
The report does not have a separate section on defense science and technology. There are many security objectives that identified in the report that have an important technological component, such as arms control. Beyond those areas, there are the following passages on defense S&T:
In a section entitled "Advancing U.S. National Interests", under the heading "Military Activities": "We are committed to maintaining U.S. leadership in space. Unimpeded access to and use of space is a vital national interest - essential for protecting U.S. national security, promoting our prosperity and ensuring our well-being. . . . . We will maintain our technological superiority in space systems, and sustain a robust U.S. space industry and a strong, forward-looking research base. We also will continue efforts to prevent the spread of weapons of mass destruction to space, and will continue to pursue global partnerships addressing space-related scientific, economic, environmental and security issues."
In the same section, under a heading "Preparing for an Uncertain Future": "We must prepare for an uncertain future even as weaddress today's security problems. We need to look closely at our national security apparatus to ensure its effectiveness by adapting its institutions to meet new challenges. This means we must transform our capabilities and organizations - diplomatic, defense, intelligence, law enforcement, and economic - to act swiftly and to anticipate new opportunities and threats in today's continually evolving, highly complex international security environment. Preparing for an uncertain future also means that we must have a strong, competitive, technologically superior, innovative and responsive industrial and research and development base."
Later under this same heading: "Transformation of our military forces is critical to meeting the military challenges of the next century. Exploiting the revolution in military affairs is fundamental if U.S. forces are to retain their dominance in an uncertain world. Investment in research and development while closely monitoring trends in likely future threats are important elements of our transformation effort. A carefully planned and focused modernization program will maintain our technological superiority and replace Cold War-era equipment with new systems and platforms capable of supporting the full spectrum of military operations.
"Transformation extends well beyond the acquisition of new military systems - we seek to leverage technological, doctrinal, operational and organizational innovations to give U.S. forces greater capabilities and flexibility."
Under another heading entitled "Enhancing American Competitiveness": "Technological advantage. We will continue to support a vigorous science and technology base that promotes economic growth, creates high-wage jobs, sustains a healthy, educated citizenry, and provides the basis for our future military systems. We will invest in education and training to develop a workforce capable of participating in our rapidly changing economy. And we will invest in world-class transportation, information and space infrastructures for the twenty-first century."
The report can be accessed at the following site: http://www.pub.Whitehouse.gov/WH/Publications/html/Publications.h tml Go to "Releases on Science and Technology," and at this heading on the same page select "2000", to find "A National Security Strategy for a New Century."
Richard M. Jones