With missions and technologies growing faster than resources, the naval services must determine their priorities within the overall framework of U.S. defense. One unique strength is their ability to be present overseas with quick-responding, combat-credible forces without regard to politics and sovereignty.
The U.S. military is facing a dilemma born of its own success. Each operation and strategic review since Desert Storm has led us to new requirements for capabilities to make future operations even more successful, precise, and casualty free. Our ultimate goal, as stated in "Joint Vision 2020," is full spectrum dominance, and we continue to pursue this with ever-better technologies and more capable systems, each more costly than the one it replaces. There appear to be no limits to the technological capabilities we can achieve, but there are real limits to our resources. We cannot afford all the capabilities we have declared to be required.