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 ocr@rand.org or (703) 413-1100 x5643.

Recent Findings

  • North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un speaks at a plenary meeting of 8th central committee of the Workers' Party of Korea in this still image taken from KRT footage on June 16, 2021, photo by KRT TV/Reuters

    Report

    Engaging with North Korea: Lessons from Game Theory

    Aug 12, 2021

    Applying game theory to the situation in North Korea may provide insights into how the United States can deal with Kim Jong-un and carry out negotiations on denuclearization.

  • Members of a U.S. Coast Guard Officer Candidate School class and an NOAA Basic Officer Training Course class at a graduation ceremony May 9, 2017, photo by PO3 Nicole Barger/U.S. Coast Guard

    Report

    How the U.S. Coast Guard Could Increase Its Diversity

    Aug 11, 2021

    Women and racial and ethnic minorities are underrepresented in the United States Coast Guard, especially in higher ranks and senior leadership. Changes are needed across the personnel lifecycle, from recruiting to career development, advancement and promotions, retention, and climate.

  • Soldiers participate in training at Camp Ripley, Minnesota, June 5, 2021, photo by Sgt. Mahsima Alkamooneh/U.S. Army

    Research Brief

    Should the U.S. Military Be Less Predictable?

    Aug 11, 2021

    The United States might strengthen deterrence by becoming more operationally unpredictable. Several approaches could work to increase adversary uncertainty about how U.S. forces would fight, but there are risks and costs.

  • U.S. Army Sgt. Robert Newman watches the sunrise after a patrol mission near Zabul, Afghanistan, March 19, 2009, photo by Staff Sgt. Adam Mancini/U.S. Army

    Commentary

    Applying Machiavellian Discourses to the Wars in Afghanistan and Iraq

    Aug 9, 2021

    After 20 years of war without victory in both Afghanistan and Iraq, it is time to derive key lessons from both conflicts to avoid repeating the same mistakes. Niccolò Machiavelli, whose insights on statecraft have endured for five centuries, is a valuable guide in analyzing those lessons.

  • U.S. President Joe Biden speaks about the Colonial Pipeline shutdown at the White House in Washington, D.C., May 13, 2021, photo by Kevin Lamarque/Reuters

    Commentary

    How to Deter Ransomware Attacks

    Aug 9, 2021

    To rein in ransomware attacks, the United States needs to upend the risk-reward ratio for hackers and for the countries that harbor or support them. Such a strategy would make networks harder to breach, hit back harder against hackers, and claw back gains from those who succeed.

More Research on National Security

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    Alerts & Newsletters

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

    • U.S. President Barack Obama and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev sign the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty at Prague Castle in the Czech Republic, April 8, 2010, photo by Jason Reed/Reuters

      Why Should the New START Agreement Be Extended?

      Mar 31, 2020

      Only one nuclear arms control agreement between the United States and Russia remains: the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START). But that agreement expires next year.

    • Russian President Vladimir Putin at his annual end-of-year news conference in Moscow, Russia, December 19, 2019, photo by Evgenia Novozhenina/Reuters

      What Provokes Putin's Russia?

      Feb 27, 2020

      Deterring Russia without provoking it requires an understanding of what Russia considers to be redlines. A deterrent that is too heavy-handed might prompt the precise response that it sought to avoid.

    • In Case You Missed It: Escalation with Iran

      Feb 13, 2020

      In response to the killing of Iranian Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani, Iran is likely to continue to take action against the United States. RAND's Ariane Tabatabai describes some of the tools Iran could use to challenge the United States.

    • An activist outside the Dutch embassy in Kiev, Ukraine, holds a banner that says not to listen to Russian propaganda, February 5, 2016, photo by Gleb Garanich/Reuters

      Competing against Russia in the Gray Zone

      Jan 30, 2020

      RAND researchers ran a series of war games to explore Russian gray zone aggression--ranging from disinformation to electoral interference to little green men--in Europe.

    • A rifleman with Bravo Company, 1st Battalion, 23rd Marine Regiment

      How Can Imminent Danger Pay and Hostile Fire Pay Be Improved?

      Dec 19, 2019

      RAND examined HFP and IDP and assessed whether a different approach might be more effective. While the current process is generally effective, it could be improved by allowing IDP rates to vary with the severity of threat in a location.

    • An Army couple reacts to local residents' posts regarding housing issues on a community Facebook group at their army base home in Fort Hood, Texas, May 16, 2019, photo by Amanda Voisard/Reuters

      What Are the Biggest Challenges Facing Army Families?

      Nov 21, 2019

      RAND surveyed more than 8,500 Army spouses on common military service challenges and their solutions. The analysis found that spouses most frequently rate work-life balance, military practices and culture, and their own well-being as their top problem areas.

    • Illustration of a network, security information, and AI technology, image by  issaronow/Adobe Stock

      How Do Russia and China Engage in Social Manipulation?

      Oct 29, 2019

      U.S. competitors such as Russia and China engage in hostile social manipulation—the use of informational means to manipulate political, social, and economic conditions.

    • In Case You Missed It: Extending Russia

      Oct 8, 2019

      Former Ambassador James Dobbins, Raphael Cohen, and Howard Shatz discuss Russia's economic, political, and military vulnerabilities and anxieties. What are some ways the United States can impose costs on Russia?

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