2022 National Defense Strategy, Nuclear Posture Review

The following is the 2022 National Defense Strategy, the 2022 Nuclear Posture Review and 2022 Missile Defense Review that were released on Oct. 27, 2022. From the report For more than seven decades, the vision and leadership of the United States have undergirded international peace and prosperity. A strong, principled, and adaptive U.S. military is […]

The following is the 2022 National Defense Strategy, the 2022 Nuclear Posture Review and 2022 Missile Defense Review that were released on Oct. 27, 2022.

From the report

For more than seven decades, the vision and leadership of the United States have undergirded international peace and prosperity. A strong, principled, and adaptive U.S. military is a central pillar for U.S. leadership, particularly in the face of challenges arising from dramatic geopolitical, technological, economic, and environmental change. The Department of Defense stands ready to meet these challenges and seize opportunities with the confidence, creativity, and commitment that have long characterized our military and the democracy that it serves.

The Department will focus on safeguarding and advancing vital U.S. national interests. We will work alongside other agencies and departments to:

  • Protect the security of the American people;
  • Expand economic prosperity and opportunity; and
  • Realize and defend the values at the heart of American way of life.

The 2022 National Defense Strategy (NDS) sets forth how the U.S. military will meet growing threats to vital U.S. national security interests and to a stable and open international system. It directs the Department to act urgently to sustain and strengthen U.S. deterrence, with the People’s Republic of China (PRC) as the Department’s pacing challenge.

The strategy identifies four top-level defense priorities that the Department must pursue to strengthen deterrence. First, we will defend the homeland. Second, we will deter strategic attacks against the United States, our Allies, and our partners. Third, we will deter aggression and be prepared to prevail in conflict when necessary. Fourth, to ensure our future military advantage, we will build a resilient Joint Force and defense ecosystem.

The Department will advance our priorities through integrated deterrence, campaigning, and actions that build enduring advantages. Integrated deterrence entails working seamlessly across warfighting domains, theaters, the spectrum of conflict, all instruments of U.S. national power, and our network of Alliances and partnerships. Tailored to specific circumstances, it applies a coordinated, multifaceted approach to reducing competitors’ perceptions of the net benefits of aggression relative to restraint. Integrated deterrence is enabled by combat-credible forces prepared to fight and win, as needed, and backstopped by a safe, secure, and effective nuclear deterrent.

Day after day, the Department will strengthen deterrence and gain advantage against competitors’ most consequential coercive measures by campaigning – the conduct and sequencing of logically- linked military initiatives aimed at advancing well-defined, strategy-aligned priorities over time. The United States will operate forces, synchronize broader Departmental efforts, and align Departmental activities with other instruments of national power to counter forms of competitor coercion, complicate competitors’ military preparations, and develop our own warfighting capabilities together with those of our Allies and partners.

To shore up the foundations for integrated deterrence and campaigning, we will act urgently to build enduring advantages across the defense ecosystem – the Department of Defense, the defense industrial base, and the array of private sector and academic enterprises that create and sharpen the Joint Force’s technological edge. We will modernize the systems that design and build the Joint Force, with a focus on innovation and rapid adjustment to new strategic demands. We will make our supporting systems more resilient and agile in the face of threats that range from competitors to the effects of climate change. And we will cultivate our talents, recruiting and training a workforce with the skills, abilities, and diversity we need to creatively solve national security challenges in a complex global environment.

The 2022 NDS advances a strategy focused on the PRC and on collaboration with our growing network of Allies and partners on common objectives. It seeks to prevent the PRC’s dominance of key regions while protecting the U.S. homeland and reinforcing a stable and open international system. Consistent with the 2022 National Security Strategy (NSS), a key objective of the NDS is to dissuade the PRC from considering aggression as a viable means of advancing goals that threaten vital U.S. national interests. Conflict with the PRC is neither inevitable nor desirable. The Department’s priorities support broader whole-of-government efforts to develop terms of interaction with the PRC that are favorable to our interests and values, while managing strategic competition and enabling the pursuit of cooperation on common challenges.

Even as we focus on the PRC as our pacing challenge, the NDS also accounts for the acute threat posed by Russia, demonstrated most recently by Russia’s unprovoked further invasion of Ukraine. The Department will support robust deterrence of Russian aggression against vital U.S. national interests, including our treaty Allies. We will work closely with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and our partners to provide U.S. leadership, develop key enabling capabilities, and deepen interoperability. In service of our strategic priorities, we will accept measured risk but remain vigilant in the face of other persistent threats, including those posed by North Korea, Iran, and violent extremist organizations (VEOs). We will also build resilience in the face of destabilizing and potentially catastrophic transboundary challenges such as climate change and pandemics, which increasingly strain the Joint Force.

We cannot meet these complex and interconnected challenges alone. Mutually-beneficial Alliances and partnerships are our greatest global strategic advantage – and they are a center of gravity for this strategy. We will strengthen major regional security architectures with our Allies and partners based on complementary contributions; combined, collaborative operations and force planning; increased intelligence and information sharing; new operational concepts; and our ability to draw on the Joint Force worldwide.

We cannot delay. The NSS describes the United States’ agenda for renewal in the coming “decisive decade,” a ten-year window for leadership to tackle our era’s defining challenges. In full accord with the urgency conveyed by the NSS and in support of its broader goals, the Department will move immediately to implement the changes detailed in this NDS, the Secretary of Defense’s preeminent guidance document.

The challenges we face are formidable, but the United States possesses strengths that our competitors cannot match. Our democratic values, our open society, our diversity, our base of innovation, our culture of ingenuity, our combat experience, our globe-spanning network of Alliances and partnerships, and above all our extraordinary All Volunteer Force – these together provide firm foundations for a defense strategy that will keep America secure, prosperous, and free.

Download the document here.