Security Cooperation

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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 Brief

    How Could the United States Gain Greater Access to Asia During a Conflict?

    Ensuring access to the territories of Indo-Pacific allies and partners in the event of a future conflict with China is a critical concern. How are Japan, the Philippines, Singapore, Indonesia, and India likely to make access decisions? And can the United States influence their decisions?

    Nov 28, 2023

  • Report

    South Korea Needs Greater Nuclear Assurance

    With growing nuclear threats from North Korea and China, there has been considerable interest in South Korea in developing its own nuclear weapons. But doing so could become a major disaster. The United States should bring greater strategic clarity to its nuclear umbrella commitment to South Korea.

    Oct 29, 2023

Explore Security Cooperation

  • An aircraft takes off to join the U.S.-led coalition to conduct air strikes against military targets in Yemen, aimed at the Iran-backed Houthi militia that has been targeting international shipping in the Red Sea, from an undisclosed location, in this handout picture released on January 12, 2024, photo by U.S. Central Command via X/Handout via Reuters

    Commentary

    Yes to Striking Iranian-Backed Militants

    Strikes against state-backed militias like the Houthis degrade these groups' military capabilities. But such strikes will almost certainly not deter the group from launching additional attacks. They could, however, take key capabilities and leaders off the battlefield, challenging Iran and the militias it backs to field the same quantity and quality of attacks in the future.

    Feb 26, 2024

  • U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken meets with Palau's President Surangel Whipps Jr., Micronesia's President David Panuelo and Marshall Islands' President David Kabua at the State Department in Washington, D.C., photo by Sarah Silbiger/Pool/Reuters

    Commentary

    Gridlock Has Put U.S. Strategic Advantages in the Pacific at Risk

    The United States is on the verge of an enormous geostrategic blunder in the Indo-Pacific region. Congress has yet to pass funding promised last year under pacts with the Marshall Islands, Micronesia, and Palau. Given the island nations' economic needs, further dithering by Washington could leave them little choice but to deepen engagement with China.

    Feb 22, 2024

  • A missile explodes in the sky over Kyiv, Ukraine, February 7, 2024, photo by Gleb Garanich/Reuters

    Commentary

    Air Defense Shapes Warfighting in Ukraine

    The strength of air and missile defense in Ukraine has abetted the stalemate in the ground war. Its weakness has led to immense human suffering and infrastructure damage. As the war continues, air defense could become even more salient.

    Feb 22, 2024

  • A retired military tank on the beach with China in the background in Kinmen, Taiwan, December 20, 2023, photo by Ann Wang/Reuters

    Commentary

    Scared Strait

    The foundations of the longstanding U.S. approach to Taiwan-China relations are crumbling in the face of growing Chinese military power and aggression. Washington can no longer rely on its existing policies in the hopes that what worked in the past will succeed in the future.

    Feb 22, 2024

  • Digital image of a lock in a circle with one straight line on the left and many curved lines on the right, photo by MF3d/Getty Images

    Commentary

    Cooperation Could Be Critical to U.S. AI Success

    Cooperation between allies could be especially important to the development of artificial intelligence (AI). But co-developing AI applications with other nations faces many challenges as rapid advancements in the technology outpace policies and procedures designed during the industrial age.

    Feb 20, 2024

  • A member of the honor guard prepares during a Ukrainian flag-raising ceremony to mark the first anniversary of the liberation of the town of Bucha, outside Kyiv, March 31, 2023, photo by Gleb Garanich/Reuters

    Q&A

    Two Years After Russia Invaded Ukraine: Q&A with RAND Experts

    RAND experts discuss the state of the conflict in Ukraine and its prospects, the war's global implications, possible outcomes and solutions, and what the West and the rest of the world might be doing now and once hostilities end.

    Feb 19, 2024

  • Multimedia

    RAND Experts Discuss the Second Anniversary of Russia's Invasion of Ukraine

    In this Call with the Experts podcast, RAND experts discuss the state of the conflict in Ukraine and its prospects, the war's global implications, possible outcomes and solutions, and what the West and the rest of the world might be doing now and once hostilities end.

    Feb 16, 2024

  • A U.S. Army soldier and members of the Lithuanian Parliament take a close-up look at M1A2 Abrams tanks during a tour of Camp Herkus, Lithuania, January 4, 2024, photo by Staff Sgt. Oscar Gollaz/U.S. Army

    Commentary

    From Forward Presence to Forward Defense: NATO's Defense of the Baltics

    The Baltic states remain vulnerable to a potential Russian military attack due to their geography. They are watching closely as NATO begins pivoting its posture of deterrence by punishment to deterrence by denial.

    Feb 14, 2024

  • Presidential candidate Alexander Stubb attends his election reception in Helsinki, Finland, February 11, 2024, photo by Lehtikuva/Emmi Korhonen via Reuters

    Commentary

    How Finland Approaches Its New NATO Role Is a Key Decision for the New President

    Finland's presidential election is complete, and Alexander Stubb is the winner. As the president holds executive power to set foreign and security policy, as well as commanding the military, NATO countries are watching closely to see which course their newfound ally will chart.

    Feb 14, 2024

  • Journal Article

    Journal Article

    Opportunities and Challenges of AUKUS

    President Biden's approval of the 2024 National Defense Authorization Act will facilitate key aspects of the AUKUS technology cooperation partnership. The partnership will benefit each participant, but is not without its challenges.

    Feb 9, 2024

  • Stylized U.S. and Russian flags

    Research Brief

    The Day After: Postwar U.S. Strategy Toward Russia

    How should the United States deal with Russia after the war in Ukraine finally ends? And how might U.S. policy during the conflict shape the postwar world?

    Feb 9, 2024

  • The flags of the united States, Russia, and Ukraine on a cracked wall.

    Report

    Planning for the Aftermath: Assessing Options for U.S. Strategy Toward Russia After the Ukraine War

    Although there is no end in sight to the Russia-Ukraine war, U.S. policymakers should begin considering postwar Russia strategy now. The authors review U.S. strategic options and trade-offs that different choices pose for long-term U.S. interests.

    Feb 9, 2024

  • NATO Headquarters in Brussels, Belgium, April 4. 2023, photo by IMAGO/Thomas Trutschel/Reuters

    Commentary

    Four NATO Defense Priorities for the Upcoming Washington Summit

    The upcoming NATO summit in Washington, D.C., offers an opportunity for the alliance to prioritize new and transformational capabilities. With them, NATO can continue to provide deterrence and defense for its member state populations into the future, just as it has done for the past 75 years.

    Feb 8, 2024

  • Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. and U.S. President Joe Biden at the White House in Washington, D.C., May 1, 2023, photo by Leah Millis/Reuters

    Commentary

    The Good and the Bad for Biden in Southeast Asia

    Since entering office in 2021, one of the Biden administration's foreign-policy priorities has been a more effective Indo-Pacific strategy to compete with China, especially in Southeast Asia. Three years on, the administration's policy has bright spots, but still lacks a clear strategy for the region.

    Feb 8, 2024

  • A welder works on a Cougar H 4 X 4 MRAP vehicle at the factory in Ladson, S.C.

    Commentary

    Reform the Budget Process to Strengthen U.S. Global Leadership

    As the U.S. government confronts two near-peer challengers in China and Russia, along with mounting conflict in the Middle East, ensuring stability, predictability, and some measure of flexibility in the U.S. defense budget is more important than ever. Yet the U.S. budgeting system is in a state of disarray.

    Feb 7, 2024

  • The deck of the USS Donald Cook

    Journal Article

    A Security Strategy for the Black Sea

    This report outlines the strategic setting, regional challenges and threats, key planning assumptions, risk and risk mitigation, and finally DIME-based recommendations for enhancing security and stability in the Black Sea region.

    Feb 5, 2024

  • Soldiers from the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force during a United Nations peacekeeping mission

    Journal Article

    The Future of Multilateral Peacebuilding and Conflict Prevention

    The multilateral system, defined as the set of rules, norms, and institutions that together constitute the world's governance architecture, is not static. Several drivers of change threaten to erode hard-earned gains the system has delivered.

    Feb 5, 2024

  • Typhoons at RAF Coningsby in Linconshire, United Kingdom, December 9, 2022, photo by Joe Giddens/Pool via Reuters

    Commentary

    Lessons for Industrial Resilience: The UK's Typhoon Export Conundrum

    If Turkey steps back from its pursuit of the Typhoon, it would join India, South Korea, Finland, the UAE, and Switzerland on the list of countries to decline acquisition of the four-nation collaborative platform jointly exported by the United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, and Spain. The United Kingdom and Germany have the most to gain, or lose, from the Typhoon's success.

    Feb 2, 2024

  • A Ukrainian serviceman drives an M2 Bradley infantry fighting vehicle at a position near Zaporizhzhia, Ukraine, June 26, 2023, photo by Rfe/Rl/Serhii Nuzhnenko via Reuters

    Commentary

    Upping the Ante on Western Weapons Could End the Stalemate in Ukraine

    The Russo-Ukrainian war might be at a strategic tipping point. The ground fight in Ukraine's east is stalemated, but Russian sea and air power in Crimea is diminished. The future flow of Western aid may be less certain. To address these challenges, the West might escalate support for Ukraine's military and signal firmness to Moscow.

    Jan 30, 2024

  • Report

    Report

    Allied by Design: Defining a Path to Thoughtful Allied Space Power

    In this report, the authors evaluate the U.S. Department of Defense space enterprise and the interest, potential, and perspectives of six allies to recommend opportunities for a more effective approach to allied space power.

    Jan 30, 2024