National Security Issues

This page offers an easy way for policymakers to access national security research and analysis that is relevant to current Congressional agendas. For additional information, to request documents, or to arrange a briefing, contact the RAND Office of Congressional Relations at or (703) 413-1100 x5643.

Recent Findings

  • The Sodium Guidestar at the Air Force Research Laboratory's Starfire Optical Range resides on a 6,240 foot hilltop at Kirtland Air Force Base, New Mexico, photo by U.S. Air Force


    Third Offset Fostered Real Intellectual Change Within DoD

    Mar 31, 2021

    In 2014, U.S. defense leaders began promoting the Third Offset, a strategy centered on the potential of technology to offset Chinese and Russian advances. Its core principles were adopted by the 2018 National Defense Strategy. DoD started to look at security problems in a new light and develop closer ties with Silicon Valley.

  • Stranded ship Ever Given, one of the world's largest container ships, after it ran aground, in the Suez Canal, March 28, 2021, photo by Suez Canal Authority/Handout via Reuters


    The Suez Grounding Was an Accident. The Next Blocked Chokepoint Might Not Be

    Mar 30, 2021

    The recent spectacle of a hulking container ship wedged into the Suez Canal is a reminder of how vulnerable maritime transportation is to blocked chokepoints. The fragility of maritime lifelines may encourage the use of this tactic in future conflict.

  • A hand with megaphone spreading social media news on Coronavirus infection, photo by Feodora Chiosea/Getty Images


    Towards an AI-Based Counter-Disinformation Framework

    Mar 29, 2021

    Artificial intelligence is being used to develop sophisticated malign information on social media. But AI also provides opportunities to strengthen responses to these threats and can foster wider resilience to disinformation.

  • One soldier comforts a depressed soldier, photo by A1C Kathryn R.C. Reaves/U.S. Air Force


    Perceived Retaliation Against Military Sexual Assault Victims

    Mar 29, 2021

    Fear of retaliation is often identified as a barrier to reporting sexual assault in the military. To improve the likelihood that victims will choose to engage in response services after an assault, it is critical to understand and mitigate the consequences they face, including the risk of retaliation.

  • People are silhouetted as they hold mobile devices in front of a screen projected with a binary code and a Russian flag, in Zenica, Bosnia and Herzegovina, October 29, 2014, photo by Dado Ruvic/Reuters


    PSAs Might Prevent Foreign Disinformation from Taking Hold

    Mar 29, 2021

    Tests with focus groups suggest that Americans are vulnerable to Russian-made memes. The participants responded positively to a public service announcement about foreign election interference, especially after they learned that they had just viewed content from Russia designed to breed dissension.

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    Alerts & Newsletters

    RAND periodically sends email alerts to update Congress on highlights of recent work concerning national security.

    • Heide Couch,Travis Air Force Base,60AMW/PA,Base Mulitmedia Service Center,BMSC,TAFB,military,air force,photo lab,us air force photo,-F-RU983-

      How Can Distributed Operations Reduce Air Base Vulnerability?

      Aug 30, 2019

      In an era of great power competition, the United States can no longer assume that air bases will be sanctuaries. An enemy could disrupt air operations with attacks on a few high-payoff targets at main operating bases or the joint air operations center.

    • Fishing boats departing from Shenjiawan port in Zhoushan, Zhejiang province towards the East China Sea fishing grounds, September 17, 2012, photo by Stringer/Reuters

      How Can the U.S. Respond to Gray Zone Threats?

      Jul 30, 2019

      In an era of strategic competition, adversaries are engaging in activities below the threshold of war--an area commonly called the “gray zone.” How can the United States mitigate these threats and gain strategic advantage?

    • Russian President Vladimir Putin, Chinese President Xi Jinping, and Egypt's President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi at the 2017 BRICS Summit in Xiamen, China, September 5, 2017, photo by Kenzaburo Fukuhara/Reuters/Pool

      Competing with Russia and China in the Middle East

      Jun 28, 2019

      Russia and China have significantly increased their engagement in the Middle East in recent years. In this new era of strategic competition, what could the United States do to compete successfully?

    • In Case You Missed It: How to Reduce Suicide Among U.S. Veterans and Service Members

      Jun 3, 2019

      The rate at which veterans and service members die by suicide is a national security problem that requires a comprehensive approach. RAND's Terri Tanielian outlines six priorities for addressing the challenge of suicide.

    • Silhouette of soldiers with military vehicles, photo by veneratio/Adobe Stock

      What Makes for a Successful Military Intervention?

      May 30, 2019

      Policymakers often view military interventions as a tool to achieve political objectives. While these objectives were often successfully achieved, a recent RAND analysis of U.S. military interventions found that the levels of success have been declining over time.

    • In Case You Missed It: Russia and China in the Middle East

      May 23, 2019

      The Middle East is important to Russia, China, and the United States because of its strategic location and vast energy resources. What are the United States' strengths in this new era of strategic competition?

    • U.S. Marine Corps Lt. Col. Christopher G. Dixon, operations officer, 2nd Marine Division (2nd MARDIV) is promoted to the rank of colonel during his promotion ceremony at Camp Lejeune, N.C., Jan. 3, 2014, photo by Lance Cpl. David McKenzie/U.S. Marine Corps

      Modernizing Officer Management

      Apr 30, 2019

      In this congressionally mandated report, RAND captured the military departments' perspectives on potential changes in the statutory framework for military officer career management, some of which have since been enacted.

    • In Case You Missed It: Military Compensation to Support Retention, Performance, and Talent Management

      Apr 11, 2019

      Could the current military compensation system be improved to better support changes in personnel management? The system has performed well over time, but RAND's Beth Asch outlines some possible improvements for policymakers to consider.

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