Defense Strategy and the Empire State of Mind: How Preparing for the Best Can Leave Washington Vulnerable to the Rest

War on the Rocks – At a time when the United States is on the hook to deter four rivals across three theaters, all of its military services, including the sea services, are busy refocusing their attention on great-power competitors and reorienting their concepts, equipment, and operating patterns to deny aggression. Unless the United States scales back commitments or spends enough on defense to enjoy a surplus of power, overstretch is a very real possibility under these conditions.