The National Security Strategy of the United States: Geopolitics

8/7/21: Due to technical difficulties we are unable to upload the entire post. The full document is available on Google Docs.

Introductory Note

This essay and its companion, “The National Defense Strategy: Military-Economic Warfare, Global Blockade, and Cyber,” provide ideas for incorporation in coming versions of the documents “The National Security Strategy of the US” and “The National Defense Strategy of the US.” These national documents have a close, symbiotic relationship, as do these two essays, which share a common logic, structure, and multiple cross-references. However, the ideas in the two essays are severable. The reader does not have to subscribe to one to endorse the other — though they are written with that linkage in mind. Specifically, the NSS provides the ideas, the input — geopolitics — and the NDS provides the actions, the output — military-economic warfare. Critique and suggestions for action are offered in a spirit of utmost respect for the offices involved


Rewrite the National Security Strategy of the US; adopt a geopolitical perspective, specifically: Acknowledge that the US is a geopolitical sea power engaged in long-term competition with great continental adversaries. The ultimate stakes are control of Eurasia, either through a) a stable balance of power (with no single entity in control) or b) through the suzerainty of one state or a duopoly.

Recognize that the security of the US depends on preserving a) and preventing b) and requires maintenance of favorable military balance:

  • in the key economic regions of Eurasia; and
  • on the world ocean.

Exploit the advantages that a sea power enjoys and defend its vulnerabilities — above all the sea lines of communication that link the US to its allies; its advantages include:

  • alliance formation (addressed here) — it attracts many allies; its continental adversaries none
  • military-economic warfare (addressed separately).

Combine the NSS’s competitive strategies with cooperative ones to deal with the security dilemma. Publicly express the NSS mainly in ideological language; privately base it mainly on geopolitical principles.

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