In the News & Commentary

The Mitchell Institute’s editorials, media articles featuring Mitchell expertise, and other content.

From Gen Billy Mitchell and the Ostfriesland to 21st Century Aerospace Power

On July 21st, 1921, Brig Gen Billy Mitchell and the First Provisional Air Brigade accomplished what everyone at the time said was impossible: sink the legendary battleship Ostfriesland. The feat fundamentally transformed what it meant to effectively project military power. World War II, the Cold War, Desert Storm, and modern warfare are all inextricably tied to Mitchell’s vision. Today, Airmen and Guardians embody Mitchell’s vision by proving the nation’s leaders ways to project smart combat

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Defense Budget Smoke and Mirrors Keep America’s Air and Space Power Grossly Underfunded

Ever wonder why the Department of the Air Force has the oldest, smallest aircraft fleet in service history and space assets are stretched far too thin? Here’s a major reason: nearly 20% of what appears in its budget—almost $40B—doesn’t actually go to Air Force or Space Force. It’s passed through to other government entities. That’s enough to buy over 400 F-35s a year, not to mention a tremendous about of space capabilities! So while the Department of the Air Force

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Why America Could Lose Its Next War

Defense News | July 9, 2021 | Mark Gunzinger | The result of 30 years of “building down to build up” is a military that lacks the capacity to fight a single peer aggressor plus defend the U.S. homeland and deter nuclear attacks. Since defense leaders seem reluctant to be forthright and sound the alarm, Congress must step in.

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Maneuver Warfare in Space: The Strategic Imperative for Nuclear Thermal Propulsion

Defense News | July 8, 2021 | Chris Stone | Traditional chemical propellants used in current satellite designs are only designed to last for a limited life span, increasing the likelihood an adversary could “run them dry” by forcing more defensive maneuvers than their energy stores can sustain. Thanks to advances in technology, nuclear thermal propulsion would provide a solution to this challenge. Even though it sounds straight out of science fiction, advances in materials,

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