Today begins the first in a series of contributions from my friend Justin Logan, former Cato Institute director of foreign policy studies. I know Justin as an expert on U.S. grand strategy, international relations theory, and American foreign policy.
One of my favorite Foreign Policy studies was published for the Foreign Policy Research Institute by Elsevier in 2012. In this study, Justin and fellow Cato Institute scholar Benjamin H. Friedman wrote to readers on A Military Budget for an Insular Maritime Power.
The U.S. military could be far cheaper. As a rich state remote from trouble, the United States can afford a wait-and-see approach to distant threats, letting others bear the initial cost of meeting them. Abandoning the pretension that global trade depends on U.S protection would allow vast reductions in overseas missions and peace-time military expenditures. Avoiding the conflation of foreign disorder with foreign threats would allow American leaders to plan for fewer occupational wars. Shedding these missions would allow the Pentagon to lose force structure—reducing the number of U.S military personnel, the weapons and vehicles procured for them, and operational costs. The resulting force would be more elite, less strained and far less expensive—it could be reduced in cost by a quarter to a third, leaving aside war costs.
More about Justin:
Formerly the Cato Institute’s director of foreign policy studies, Logan writes primarily about politics and American foreign policy. He holds a master’s degree in international relations from the University of Chicago and a bachelor’s degree in international relations from American University. He is an expert on U.S. grand strategy, international relations theory, and American foreign policy. He has lectured on American strategy across the country and across the world, and his articles have appeared in International Security, the Journal of Strategic Studies, Foreign Policy, the National Interest, the Harvard International Review, Orbis, National Review, the American Conservative, Reason, Politico, and the American Prospect, among others. A native Missourian, Logan currently lives in Washington, DC with his wife and two sons, where they are opening a Latin American wine and spirits bar, Ruta del Vino.