The White House on Thursday rolled out a long-awaited assessment of the U.S. defense industrial base that painted an alarming picture of secular decline. The assessment traces the sources of industrial decay not just to the mercantilist behavior of China, but also counterproductive federal policies and failure to invest in critical skills. It recommends a series of changes aimed at revitalizing the industrial base and removing impediments to competitiveness. And it does not propose to address the defense industry in isolation from the broader economy. Rather, it suggests that America cannot have a robust, resilient defense industrial base unless the rest of the industrial economy is healthy too. I have written a commentary for Forbes here.
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