Discussion of a readiness crisis has swirled in military and policy circles over recent years. Despite a modest bump in the defense budget under President Trump, additional funding may not resolve the concerns. In its 16th year of continuous operations, the military is increasingly strained, but the force is still responding as required, and readiness is only one issue that needs to be tackled. Alongside readiness, the goals of modernizing the force and fostering innovative change must remain major considerations for the future.
On May 22, the Center for 21st Century Security and Intelligence at Brookings hosted an event focused on addressing the needs of the U.S. military. Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-Texas), chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, discussed readiness, innovation, and other issues with Michael O’Hanlon, senior fellow at Brookings.