The NATO alliance served its participants well in countering the strategic threat once posed by the Soviet Union, but the rise of other regional powers and coalitions since end of the Cold War has prompted a reevaluation of existing alliances. RAND research has provided policymakers with essential information on how best to forge new defense cooperation agreements and strengthen old alliances to counter emerging security threats.
Research conducted by:
RAND National Security Research Division;
RAND Project AIR FORCE;
RAND Arroyo Center;
News Releases (8)
Like the collapse of East Germany, the collapse of North Korea could occur suddenly and with little warning. But a North Korean collapse could be far more dangerous and disastrous than the actual collapse of East Germany, especially given the inadequate preparations for it.
Since World War II, the United States has relied on a global network of military bases and forces to protect its interests and those of its allies. But the international environment has changed greatly and economic concerns have risen, leading some to debate just what America's role should now be in the world.
Energy purchases made by the U.S. Department of Defense do not influence world oil prices, making cutting fuel use the only effective choice to reduce what the Pentagon spends on petroleum fuels.
Dissuading Iran from developing nuclear weapons faces major obstacles, but it's too soon to give up trying as it may still be possible to influence the outcome of Iran's internal political debate.
The "Americanization" of NATO's mission in Afghanistan may prove crucial to the future of Afghanistan, but the alliance could suffer long-term harm by being relegated to the position of junior partner to the United States.
While al Qaeda is the primary terrorist/extremist threat in East Africa, the region suffers more broadly from a danger of radical Islamist groups and organizations that the United States and its allies must address to reshape the region's security environment.
In preparing for possible future military interventions, the United States needs to shift substantial resources to the Department of State and U.S. Agency for International Development, and military-civilian efforts must be integrated from top to bottom.
Unofficial diplomatic discussions can play a significant role in shaping attitudes in the Middle East and Asia, but are best used as a long-term strategy without expectations for dramatic policy shifts.