A conversation with the Joint Chiefs of Staff

The United States military is entering a period of widespread and discontinuous change. With forces transitioning out of lead combat roles in the Middle East and rebalancing to the Pacific, along with large-scale budget reductions, the military of the next 10 or 20 years may look very different than the force that has been at war for over a decade.

Join the American Enterprise Institute in a series of conversations with the Joint Chiefs of Staff as they discuss these and other critical issues of national security.

General Mark A. Welsh, III ►
Chief of Staff of the Air Force

General Mark A. Welsh, III, USAF
Wednesday, December 11, 2013, 8:00 AM - 9:00 AM
With sequestration likely to remain law throughout this year and beyond, the US Air Force finds itself in a "ready today" versus a "modern tomorrow" dilemma.
How will the Air Force balance capability, capacity, and readiness in the coming years? What is the future of key modernization initiatives such as the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, the KC-46 aerial refueling tanker, and the long-range strike bomber?  Moreover, what lessons has the Air Force learned from past debates that will influence upcoming budget proposals?

In the concluding session of its series with the Joint Chiefs of Staff, AEI's Marilyn Ware Center for Security Studies will host General Mark Welsh III, Chief of Staff of the US Air Force, to address these questions and more.

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Admiral Jonathan W. Greenert ►
Chief of Naval Operations

Admiral Jonathan W. Greenert, USN
Thursday, September 5, 2013, *8:30 AM - 9:30 AM  (*New Time)
America’s global presence as facilitated by the daily forward-deployed missions of US Navy and US Marine Corps ships and personnel remains a vital component of American military strategy. However, with the current budget realities of potentially reducing the number of "surge-ready" carrier-strike groups by two-thirds and with only half of planned surface ship availabilities ready for 2014, the Navy's worldwide presence risks shrinking.

How does Navy leadership intend to balance the need to maintain readiness, forward presence, and ship and aircraft maintenance in light of potential continued sequestration? How would decreased presence impact US military capabilities and the foreign policy goals they underpin? And what is the Navy's plan for maintaining forward-deployed forces to ensure America’s global presence and to protect US interests overseas?
AEI’s Marilyn Ware Center for Security Studies will host Admiral Jonathan Greenert, Chief of Naval Operations, in the third installment in a series of four events with each member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

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General Raymond T. Odierno ►
Chief of Staff of the Army

Squaring the circle: General Raymond T. Odierno on American military strategy in a time of declining resources
Monday, July 29 2013, 10:30 AM -11:30 AM
With sequestration a reality and little hope for a bargain on the horizon, the US military is facing a steeper-than-planned defense drawdown that few wanted but fewer still seem to be willing or able to stop. What are the implications for the men and women of the US Army if the sequester stays on the books for the foreseeable future?

AEI’s Marilyn Ware Center for Security Studies will host General Raymond Odierno, chief of staff of the US Army, for the second installment of a series of four events with each member of the Joint Chiefs.
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General James F. Amos ►
Commandant of the US Marine Corps

Squaring the circle: General James F. Amos on American military strategy in a time of declining resources
Thursday, February 14, 2013 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM
In a period of budgetary retrenchment, what is the unique value of an expeditionary force such as the Marine Corps? AEI's Marilyn Ware Center for Security Studies will host General James F. Amos, commandant of the Marine Corps, for a timely discussion on the future of the Corps. AEI's conversation with General Amos will mark the beginning of a series of four events with the Joint Chiefs of Staff regarding the future of their respective military services.
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About the Author


  • Mackenzie Eaglen has worked on defense issues in the U.S. Congress, both House and Senate, and at the Pentagon in the Office of the Secretary of Defense and on the Joint Staff. She specializes in defense strategy, budget, military readiness and the defense industrial base. In 2010, Ms. Eaglen served as a staff member of the congressionally mandated Quadrennial Defense Review Independent Panel, a bipartisan, blue-ribbon commission established to assess the Pentagon's major defense strategy. A prolific writer on defense related issues, she has also testified before Congress.


    Follow Mackenzie Eaglen on Twitter.

  • Phone: (202) 862-7183
    Email: mackenzie.eaglen@aei.org
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    Name: Charles Morrison
    Phone: (202) 862-5945
    Email: charles.morrison@aei.org

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