As President Joe Biden and his team settle into their new jobs, how should they view the national security challenges facing the United States? And what should U.S. national security policy seek to achieve? Four months into the new administration, it is no longer enough to be the antidote to former President Donald Trump’s unilateralism; a more forward-looking and visionary foreign policy framework is needed. In his new book, “The Art of War in an Age of Peace: U.S. Grand Strategy and Resolute Restraint,” Senior Fellow Michael O’Hanlon argues that the United States should be resolute in its commitment to defend its core territories, populations, polities, and the economies of its allies, as well as the free and open skies and oceans on which the global economy depends. However, America also needs to show restraint, avoiding costly mistakes that could lead to escalation with great power rivals — such as expanding NATO to include new members — while relying instead on asymmetric defense and deterrence, including economic and military tools to preserve the international order.
On June 15, Foreign Policy at Brookings hosted an event to discuss O’Hanlon’s new book, featuring former Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Michèle Flournoy. Questions from the audience followed.
Viewers submitted questions by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter using #ArtOfWar.
PanelistMichèle Flournoy Chair, Board of Directors - Center for a New American Security, Co-Founder and Managing Partner - WestExec Advisors, Former Under Secretary of Defense for PolicyMichael E. O’Hanlon Director of Research - Foreign Policy, Director - Strobe Talbott Center for Security, Strategy, and Technology, Co-Director - Africa Security Initiative, Senior Fellow - Foreign Policy, Strobe Talbott Center for Security, Strategy, and Technology, Philip H. Knight Chair in Defense and Strategy