A Strategy Deficit

Jacob Stokes lambastes defense budget hawks:

Following, the release of the fiscal year 2012 budget Monday, the “Defending Defense” trio of The Heritage Foundation, the American Enterprise Institute and the Foreign Policy Initiative released a statement. The first line was “strategy should always guide the defense budget, not vice versa.”

True enough. But looking at the group’s proposals, there’s no strategy involved. Strategy involves identifying threats, establishing what’s needed to combat those threats and then budgeting to ensure those capabilities. The Defending Defense group makes no such efforts. Instead, they use as their yardstick defense spending as a percentage of GDP. GDP tends to continually rise – which is, for them, exactly the point. If the defense budget is pegged to GDP, it keeps rising.