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The Daunting Defense Transition

Wednesday, Nov. 5, 2008

InsideDefense.com has a rundown of "all that we know about the state of the Pentagon's budget and transition efforts as the move to an Obama administration begins in earnest."

Among the highlights, this Defense Science Board report (pdf) on "Defense Imperatives for the New Administration."

The DSB's report points out that "it's been more than two generations since the presidency transitioned with troops engaged in major combat operations," and makes recommendations about which issues should top the agenda of the next defense secretary. (Or the current defense secretary under Obama?)

A few of the problems the report highlights:

* Weapons of mass destruction challenge the safety of U.S. military forces
* DOD lacks robust plans and capabilities to support country-specific stability operations
* DOD's business practices (in acquiring and developing weapons systems) are having a long-term debilitating effect on our military forces
* The U.S. military lacks the "deep penetration" required to gather actionable intelligence on terrorists
* The cost of military success is too high and getting higher

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