Gordon Adams

Gordon Adams is a Professor of International Relations at the School of International Service, American University, and a Distinguished Fellow at the Stimson Center in Washington, DC. He was the senior White House national security budget official from 1993-97, as Associate Director for National Security and International Affairs at the Office of Management and Budget. He is the co-author of Buying National Security: How America Plans and Pays for its Global Role and Safety at Home (Routledge, 2010), and author of The Iron Triangle: The Politics of Defense Contracting (Transaction, 1981). He writes and blogs regularly on foreign and national security policy and budgets.

Articles from Contributor

Battleland Battleland

The Army and Special Forces: The Fantasy Continues

The Army, it would appear, and, perhaps the nation, has learned nothing from its unhappy experiences in Iraq and Afghanistan. This morning’s New York Times reports that Army Chief of Staff General Ray Odierno is setting off to restructure large pieces of his ground force to do in other regions, especially Africa, what they have done …

Battleland Battleland

The Defense Budget Non-Debate

Last week, as he issued his political budget, House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan tried to pull the “Generals are not telling us the honest truth” rabbit out of the hat. The Wisconsin Republican was suggesting that either the military leadership was lying — in saying they could live with $487 billion less over the next 10 …

Battleland Battleland

Reaping Non-Existent Savings From Defense

The President’s plan for deficit reduction, sent today to the Super Committee, collects 25% of its overall spending reductions by bringing the troops home from Iraq and Afghanistan. Bringing them home is probably a good thing, but the budget savings the administration claims will only appear when porcine animals are airborne. The …

Battleland Battleland

Here We Go Again: Telling the Libyans What to Do

We just can’t help ourselves. No sooner did it look like Khadafi was on his way out then the promoters of “post-conflict reconstruction and stabilization” and “stability operations” were on the march. Richard Haass, President of the Council on Foreign Relations, told the world that “NATO has to pick up the pieces.” He called for an …

Battleland Battleland

Defense Discipline: Good; Trigger Cuts: Bad

Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Adm. Mullen can hardly be expected to step up to the mike and say they can live with $800-900 billion fewer dollars than the Department currently projects it would like to have for defense.

The didn’t disappoint yesterday. They can live with the roughly $400 billion …

Battleland Battleland

Ethereal Defense Cuts – A Phony War

It’s the home stretch on the current round of wrangling over the nation’s deficits and debt. And as we reach the home stretch, the dialogue has begun to detach more and more from reality.

This is especially true for defense. The guardians at the gate, led by HASC Chair Buck McKeon, are fighting in the last trench to keep defense from …

Battleland Battleland

Rumsfeld Redux: He Doesn’t Get It

Former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld emerged from the woodwork last week to warn Leon Panetta not to do the wrong thing. He should know; his stewardship of DOD was an almost unmitigated laundry list (should we say “snowflakes”?) of wrong things.

But I wouldn’t recommend Panetta take his advice. Rumsfeld has no idea of how to …

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