Raise the Anchor or Lower the Ship: Defense Budgeting and Planning

It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent, but rather the one most adaptable to change.

Issue: Fall 1998

It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent, but rather the one most adaptable to change.--Charles Darwin

Strategy is always simple, but it is not for that reason easy.--Karl von Clausewitz

Since the days of Athens and Sparta history is replete with states that have acquired pre-eminence, have then become complacent in their moment of triumph, and have thereby failed to recognize and to correct emerging weaknesses. There is at least a growing risk that the United States, given its present foreign policy course, will follow in this unhappy tradition. The danger lies in the developing mismatch among our foreign policy ambitions, our strategy, our forces, and the resources we are prepared to devote to achieving our foreign policy and defense goals.

You must be a subscriber of The National Interest to access this article. If you are already a subscriber, please activate your online access. Not a subscriber? Become a subscriber today!