The Center for Naval Analysis (CNA) has published a tract entitled Advice from SOF on the Use of SOF for the Next Administration, October 2016. The CNA convened a meeting of special operations experts to discuss the use of special operations forces by the next administration (Trump or Clinton). The speakers consisted of a former Assistant Secretary of Defense and six former SOF commanders who served as general officers.
The overarching theme of the conference included the following:
“The sanctity of SOF”
“Preparation of the policy environment”
“Balancing the future force”
“SOF as a source of innovation”
The 18-page paper concludes:
“Today’s operating environment is complex and the future looks to be even more so. Accordingly, the next administration will face a multitude of challenges. From a continued stream of terrorist threats to the rise and resurgence of near-peer competitors, the next President will be responsible for protecting America and her interests at home and abroad from a wide range of security challenges. SOF will continue to play a central role in many of these challenges, due to their flexibility, adaptability, small footprint, and past record of success.”
CNA has published an informative paper on special operations forces that provides important considerations for the future use of SOF. Good reading for members of the incoming administration that takes the reins in January.