DoD’s 2022 National Defense Strategy (NDS)

2022 National Defense Strategy (NDS)

The 2022 National Defense Strategy (NDS) has been published by the Department of Defense. The NDS details the DoD’s path into the next decade. The new publication is a result of the DoD conducting its strategic reviews – the National Defense Strategy, the Nuclear Posture Review, and the Missile Defense Review in an integrated fashion.

The Nuclear Posture Review reaffirms that as long as nuclear weapons exist, the fundamental role of U.S. nuclear weapons is to deter a nuclear attack on the United States and its allies and partners. The Missile Defense Review undermines a potential foe’s confidence in its ability to mount a successful nuclear attack.

The NDS cites the People’s Republic of China (PRC) as the pacing challenge for the DoD. It sees the PRC as the most consequential strategic competitor for the coming decades. China is viewed as the only competitor with both the intent to reshape the international order and the power to do so.

Russia is a competitor as well, and its recent aggression against Ukraine shows that it can be a cause of major instability. Russia can’t systemically challenge the United States over the long term – but it does pose an immediate threat to U.S. interests and values. Russia has emerged at the worst threat to European security since the end of the World War II.

The actions of both China and Russia reinforce the importance of allies and partners around the world. North Korea and Iran also pose threats. North Korea’s expanding nuclear and missile capabilities are worrisome. Iran is moving ahead with its nuclear program and it supports dangerous armed proxies in the Middle East. The NDS explains the concept of integrated deterrence – using every tool at the DoD’s disposal in close collaboration with counterparts in the U.S. government and with partners and allies.

Table of Contents:

  • Introduction
  • Security Environment
  • Defense Priorities
  • Integrated Deterrence
  • Campaigning
  • Allies and Partners – Advancing Regional Goals
  • Force Planning
  • Building Enduring Advantages
  • Risk Management
  • Conclusion
  • 2022 Nuclear Posture Review
  • 2022 Missile Defense Review


2022 National Defense Strategy, Department of Defense, October 2022, PDF, 80 pages.

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