The Pentagon’s annual military spending has increased $100 billion over the last three years, with the biggest percentage increases coming in weapons accounts. Somehow, though, the rate at which key warfighting systems are being bought has not increased. In some cases, the rate is actually declining. How is that possible? Part of the explanation is that planners have become enamored with an array of new warfighting technologies not yet ready for fielding, and as a result money is going into research rather than procurement. There’s nothing wrong with pursuing hypersonics or robotics, unless it is bought at the expense of improving today’s force. If we forego near-term improvements in pursuit of a beckoning tomorrow, though, we may suffer military defeat en route to the promised land. I have written a commentary for Forbes here.
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