National Security Research Division

  • The U.S. Navy's guided-missile destroyer USS William P. Lawrence transits international waters of the South China Sea with ships from India, Japan, and the Philippines, May 5, 2019, photo by Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force

    Does Asian Security Cooperation Align with U.S. Interests?

    Key U.S. allies and partners in the Indo-Pacific have been strengthening their defense ties with regional actors over the past two decades. To what extent is this a response to the perceived threat of a rising, assertive China? And how will these new commitments affect the United States?

Blog Posts and Media Coverage

  • South Korean President Moon Jae-In (R) and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at the G20 leaders summit in Osaka, Japan, June 28, 2019, photo by Kim Kyung Hoon/Reuters

    South Korea–Japan Tensions Complicate U.S. Efforts to Leverage Allies in Competition with China

    Sep 17, 2019

    The rapid deterioration of ties between South Korea and Japan not only undercuts America's Indo-Pacific strategy, it also increases the risks to U.S. allies and partners in the region. Just how consequential is the growing South Korea–Japan tension for U.S. strategy and what is Washington doing to address the issue?

  • People carry banners and Algerian national flags during a protest calling on President Abdelaziz Bouteflika to quit, in Algiers, Algeria, March 22, 2019, photo by Zohra Bensemra/Reuters

    African Dictators Have Been Losing Power—Some to Democratic Governments. Militaries Can Tip the Scales Toward Democracy

    Sep 16, 2019

    Africa's security forces most often make headlines when they commit atrocities, crack down on protesters, or seize power in coups. But Africa's troops can also contribute to democracy and peace when they lay down their arms or refuse orders to turn their guns against the people.

  • An Israeli soldier stands guard under an Israeli national flag in the Jordan Valley near the Jewish settlement of Maale Efrayim, January 2, 2014, photo by Ronen Zvulun/Reuters

    Israel’s War with Iran May Be Going Too Far

    Sep 16, 2019

    Israel has a right to defend itself from Iranian threats to its country. American leaders should consider balancing support for Israel's efforts to counter Iran with firm redlines about activities negatively impacting American interests.

  • The Maute group stronghold with an ISIS flag in Marawi City, in southern Philippines, May 29, 2017, photo by Erik De Castro/Reuters

    Southeast Asia Loves ISIS, but Is the Feeling Mutual?

    Sep 16, 2019

    As the ISIS core in Iraq and Syria attempts to rebuild, Baghdadi and his lieutenants will have to make difficult decisions about where to allocate resources. Now that the caliphate is gone and ISIS must transform into an insurgency, the largely untested lands of Southeast Asia may yield rich rewards.

  • U.S. Marines hold military drills during Fourth of July Independence Day celebrations in Washington, D.C., July 4, 2019, photo by Joshua Roberts/Reuters

    Americans Have Faith in the Military, but They Don't Understand It

    Sep 13, 2019

    The American military is a central element of U.S. power and history, dominates discretionary spending, and remains the country's most trusted institution. Despite these factors, it is peripheral to the daily life of most citizens. As a result, the nation's most expensive and trusted institution is remote from the population that provides the people and money essential to its existence.

  • Artificial Intelligence, Graphical User Interface, photo by kontekbrothers/Getty Images

    A Code of Conduct for AI in Defense Should Be an Extension of Other Military Codes

    Sep 11, 2019

    An AI code of conduct for defense should look a lot like all other defense codes of conduct. A global society that would create the Geneva Convention is a society that believes in a moral code for warfare, and this same moral code could extend into its weaponized algorithms.

Recent Publications