Global Security Engagement: A New Model for Cooperative Threat Reduction

Extracted 06JUN2011 from

Executive Summary

In the National Defense Authorization Act of 2008, Congress directed the National Academy of Sciences to recommend ways to strengthen and expand the Department of Defense Cooperative Threat Reduction (DOD CTR) program, including the development of new initiatives. In early consultations with congressional staff, the committee appointed to author this report was also asked to come to its own judgment about the future of the DOD CTR program. The committee concludes that expanding the nation’s cooperative threat reduction programs beyond the former Soviet Union, as proposed by Congress, would enhance U.S. national security and global stability. In this report the committee proposes how this goal can best be achieved.

The committee recommends that the DOD CTR program should be expanded geographically, updated in form and function according to the concept proposed in this report, and supported as an active tool of foreign policy by engaged leadership from the White House and the relevant cabinet secretaries (Recommendation 1-1).

As requested by Congress, this report identifies a number of promising program areas that can be the basis for expanded activities across a number of regions and countries. However, future efforts to enhance global security must be part of a broader, integrated set of programs. To meet the magnitude of new security challenges, particularly at the nexus of weapons of mass destruction and terrorism, a new model is needed that will draw on a broader range of partners and require more flexibility than current programs have. The White House, working across the executive branch and with Congress, should engage a broader range of partners in a variety of roles to enable a new program model to enhance global security. At a minimum this will require:

• Becoming more agile, flexible, and responsive
• Cultivating additional domestic and global partners to help meet its goals
• Building mutually beneficial relationships that foster sustained cooperation (Recommendation 2-1)

Strong White House leadership will be necessary to achieve the integration needed for a new program model, but no new effort will succeed without the active and committed support of cabinet secretaries and other senior officials from all relevant agencies. The new global security engagement effort should be directed by the White House through a senior official at the National Security Council and be implemented by the Departments of Defense, State, Energy, Health and Human Services, Agriculture, and other relevant cabinet secretaries (Recommendation 3-1).

This new CTR program strategy will need to take into account resources available across the government and through nongovernment and international partners. Domestically, the program should include a broad group of participants, including government, academe, industry, nongovernmental organizations and individuals, and an expanded set of tools, developed and shared across the U.S. government (Recommendation 3-1a).

Internationally, the program should include multilateral partnerships that address both country- and region-specific security challenges, as well as provide support to the implementation of international treaties and other security instruments aimed at reducing threat, such as the G8 Global Partnership, the Proliferation Security Initiative, United Nations Security Council Resolution 1540, and the Global Initiative to Combat Nuclear Terrorism (Recommendation 3-1b).

A new version of CTR—a CTR 2.0—will face very different security challenges than those that inspired the original program nearly 20 years ago. Forging broad new partnerships to implement sustainable programs that employ hard and soft capabilities and are tailored to specific countries or regions will energize and strengthen global security efforts and result in tangible and intangible benefits to national security. It is essential to develop meaningful program metrics that highlight program impact, acknowledge the value to national security of intangible program results, incorporate partner metrics into the overall evaluation of programs, and link metrics to program selection criteria. The Executive Branch and Congress need to recognize that personal relationships and professional networks that are developed through USG CTR programs contribute directly to our national security and that new metrics should be developed to reflect this (Recommendation 3-2).

U.S. government bureaucracy is difficult for international partners to understand and often delays project implementation for many months, appearing to our partners as reluctance to work with them. Several specific measures can make the next generation of global security engagements more efficient, timely,  and valuable. This will lead to greater confidence, transparency, and, ultimately, enhanced national security. The legislative framework, funding mechanisms, and program leveraging opportunities should be structured to support more effective threat reduction initiatives across DOD, other USG departments and agencies, international partners, and NGOs (Recommendation 3-3).

a) Program planning should be developed out of a strategic process and be matched by a strategic budget process that produces a multiyear budget plan and distributes funding across agencies based on agency ability to respond to program requirements. As needed, agency legislative authorities should be revised to include a national security dimension (Recommendation 3-3a).

b) Congress should provide comingling authority to all agencies implementing programs under CTR 2.0 as a way to encourage other partners to contribute funds to global security engagement efforts (Recommendation 3-3b).

c) To maximize the effectiveness of CTR 2.0, the DOD CTR legal frameworks and authorities should be reassessed. DOD should undertake a systematic study of the CTR Umbrella Agreement protection provisions, what purposes they serve in which circumstances, whether there might be less intrusive means of accomplishing the provisions’ goals, and when the provisions are necessary in their present form. In addition, all USG CTR programs should identify legal and policy tools that can promote the sustainability of U.S.-funded CTR work and provide greater implementation flexibility (Recommendation 3-3c).

d) Congress should grant DOD limited “notwithstanding” authority for the CTR program—perhaps a maximum of 10 percent of the overall annual appropriation and subject to congressional notification—to give the program the additional flexibility it will need in future engagements (Recommendation 3-3d).

The CTR concept began almost two decades ago and programs should periodically be reviewed and evaluated. The Secretary of Defense should direct the review and reformulation of the DOD CTR program in support of the new model of global security engagement proposed in this report and work with the White House, Secretary of State, Secretary of Energy, and other cabinet
and agency officers to ensure full coordination and effective implementation of DOD programs in this new model. The review should also include broader military components, including the Unified Combatant Commands, the full set of programs in DTRA, DOD health and research programs, and other DOD assets (Recommendation 4-2).