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2010 Quadrennial Defense Review

This is the activity that translates the National Defense Strategy into policy and actions.  This is the framework for this go-round.

The 2010 Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) is a legislatively-mandated (USC 10, Sec. 118 (a)) review of Department of Defense (DoD) strategy and priorities. DoD is preparing now to conduct this review, which takes place every four years and will be provided to Congress in early 2010.

US Department of Defense
2010 QDR Terms of Reference Fact Sheet
April 27, 2009

 The QDR will assess the threats and challenges the nation faces and re-balance DoD’s
strategies, capabilities and forces to address today’s conflicts and tomorrow’s threats.

  • The QDR is one of the principal means by which the tenets of the National Defense Strategy are translated into potentially new policies, capabilities and initiatives.
  • The QDR will set a long-term course for DoD to follow and will provide a strategic framework for DoD’s annual program, force development, force management, and corporate support mechanisms.
  • Other strategic reviews, as well as day-to-day decisions will be carried out while the QDR is underway and will inform its deliberations.
  • Previous QDRs were conducted in 1997, 2001, and 2006.
 The strategic environment we face is complex and the security challenges – both current and
those on the horizon – are wide ranging. The global economic downturn adds to the complexity.
  • Key security challenges include violent extremist movements, the spread of weapons of mass destruction, rising powers with sophisticated weapons, failed or failing states, and increasing encroachment across the global commons (air, sea, space, cyberspace).
  • U.S. strategy must also increasingly account for a series of powerful trends that are reshaping the international landscape and will dramatically complicate the exercise of American statecraft and overseas relations.
  • In addition to the current global economic downturn, these trends include climate change, cultural and demographic shifts, increasing scarcity of resources and the spread of destabilizing technologies.
  • The U.S. must prevail in current conflicts while preparing for future contingencies.
  • The 2010 QDR will address these emerging challenges and explore ways to improve the balance of efforts and resources between:
    • Trying to prevail in current conflicts and preparing for future contingencies, and
    • Institutionalizing capabilities such as counterinsurgency and foreign military assistance and maintaining the United States’ existing conventional and strategic technological edge against other military forces.
 The specific areas of emphasis for this QDR include:
  • Further institutionalizing irregular warfare and civil support abroad capabilities and capacities, to include building partnership capacity,
  • Addressing threats posed from the use of advanced technology and WMD,
  • Global Force Posture,
  • Strengthening DoD support to civilian-led operations and activities, and
  • Managing the Department’s internal business processes to improve their efficiency and effectiveness
 The QDR process embraces a “whole of government” approach. As such, DoD will consult with other U.S. Government departments and agencies and appropriate Congressional committees.
  • The QDR will be informed by similar reviews being conducted by the Department of Homeland Security (Quadrennial Homeland Security Review), the Director of National Intelligence (Quadrennial Intelligence Community Review), and incorporate guidance from relevant National Security Council (NSC) reviews.
  • In addition, a series of separate congressionally-directed reviews of the Department’s nuclear, space and missile defense postures will be closely coordinated with the QDR, but still provide separate reports to Congress.
  • The 2010 QDR process will also include consultation mechanisms with key allies and partners.
  • The Secretary of Defense has established a governance structure to manage the coordination of the QDR.
  • The QDR will be led by the Office of the Secretary of Defense and Joint Staff. OSD and Joint Staff leadership will work closely with representatives from the Military Services and Combatant Commands and across OSD components.
  • Combatant Commanders and Service Chiefs will engage often in helping to shape issues and frame decisions for the review.


I fear for the results, and their lasting impact, of a QDR done by the current administration.

It is truly scary that we do a months long QDR analysis process, which will undoubtedly result in huge cuts in programs, hardware, end strength and mission readiness and capability for the present and future.  At the same time, Congress passes unaffordable spending bills of unprecedented scope in a matter of hours with not a single member even reading what they were voting on.  Are they fools or traitors?  Or both?

This administration is only 100 days into the ruination of our nation.  God only knows what further damage they can inflict in the remainder of their terms in office.

Historians will look back and wonder how our citizens allowed this great calamity to take place.

We are so screwed.

J(NOTA) - I don't think we'll see an end-strength cut.  Program cuts out the wazoo, but, frankly, some of them are overdue.

The question is which programs, and how deep, and with some, like FCS, do we throw the baby out with the bathwater?