The United States faces an ever-changing landscape of national security challenges, from ISIS violence to concerns about recent Russian and Chinese actions.
Such challenges call for “long-term defense planning, the careful setting of priorities, and new policies to replace old ones that are no longer appropriate – no matter how politically difficult some of that may be,” says Chase Hagaman, New England regional director for The Concord Coalition.
In a recent Seacoast Sunday (N.H.) op-ed, he says the country should “pursue comprehensive reforms in the federal budget that will put it on a sustainable course and protect economic growth in the years ahead.”
In years past, lawmakers have often relied instead on automatic, across-the-board cuts to both defense and non-defense spending without focusing on setting priorities.
Hagaman says elected officials and Pentagon leaders “must ensure that the money devoted to defense is well-spent. That will require moving beyond shallow, partisan rhetoric to a thoughtful discussion about national strategies and priorities.”