Testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee-January 24, 2017
Defense Programs The Heritage Foundation-Dakota L. Wood
………………………….Robust investment in defense, via the fiscal year 2018 budget, will not only be an important first step in rebuilding the U.S. military to the size, modernity, and readiness essential for it to perform its function in protecting America and its interests, but it will also send a profoundly important message to the rest of the world that America is once again becoming serious about protecting itself and its interests, standing with those who choose to align with it in common cause and prepared to lead like‐minded nations in the effort to preserve peace, enhance stability, and expand freedom and opportunity, and to serve as a bulwark against forces of disorder.
It isn’t a matter of figuring out what problems need to be addressed or where additional funds can be best spent or savings obtained. Nor is it a matter of quantifying shortfalls and their impact on military operations. My personal observation is that the military services have done this analysis; they know what they need, and have prioritized those needs for every additional dollar they might be provided. They have analyzed their forces and institutional ability to generate and sustain those forces and how they would spend additional funding to generate near‐term readiness and longer‐term preparedness in a balanced manner. In my judgment, their analysis is, by and large, right on target.