A congressionally-mandated commission on defense strategy has released its report, warning that the U.S. might lose a multi-front war in the future if it does not restore its military edge. One area that needs close attention is readiness, which seems to have eroded in recent years. Pilots are getting less flying hours, maintenance backlogs are growing, and spare parts are often in short supply. This is not just a consequence of strained budgets, it also reflects the way readiness is delivered and the priority that military planners assign to it. Congress needs to help the military fashion more relevant, rigorous measures of readiness, and then set goals for keeping our warfighters on their toes. Whether we win or lose, the nation’s next big war may be decided by how fast and effectively the joint force can respond to aggression. I have written a commentary for Forbes here.
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