To more effectively defend the country, lawmakers and military leaders should change the way the Pentagon manages personnel, property and equipment, Heritage Foundation expert Jim Carafano explains.
Making defense operations more efficient is a natural common cause for Congress and the Pentagon. Increased efficiency would save money—freeing up dollars that the Pentagon could plow back into rebuilding the capacity and capabilities needed to defend the country.
One change, known as Performance Based Logistics, could help the Pentagon work better with the resources it has. Other changes would improve how the Pentagon acquires equipment. This requires leadership changes, real accountability for major weapons acquisitions, cutting red tape, and ensuring the Pentagon gets the equipment it actually needs.
These reforms address a real challenge, as outlined in Heritage’s 2014 Defense Reform Handbook:
The armed forces are already inadequate to protect all the nation’s vital national interests because of shortfalls in training and maintenance. By the end of his second term, the shortfalls in readiness will be compounded by reductions in military capabilities. It is not an overstatement to conclude that the capabilities-requirements mismatch will rival the hollow forces of the 1970s under President Jimmy Carter.
How would you ensure America is properly defended?