Anticipating the 2005 Quadrennial Defense Review: Issues and Opportunities

March 6, 2005

Through the Armed Forces Force Structure Act of 1996, Congress mandated the first comprehensive, regular review of the armed services to provoke a reassessment of defense strategy and force structure. At the time, congressional mistrust of the Pentagon was such that a concurrent panel, the National Defense Panel, was convened to critique the Pentagon's findings. One of the bill's sponsors, Senator Joe Lieberman (D-CT) the other was Senator Dan Coats (R-IN) explained the vision associated with this new review: Our intent in sponsoring this legislation was to drive the defense debate to a strategy-based assessment of our future military requirements and capabilities, not to a budget-driven incremental massage of the status quo.