Is there enough information on the public record and available to the ordinary citizen at any given time to enable him or her to determine how well or how poorly the U.S. defense establishment is performing in peace -- and is prepared to perform in war?
The answer to that question is an unequivocal "yes."
By focusing total concentration on military developments for over forty years, the author has been able to anticipate every major trend, and every major weakness, in U.S. national defense and, where cooperative editors could be found, to publish such findings. Access to the highest levels of classified information during periods of military service and civilian government employment interspersed over those forty years confirmed that nothing held by the government undermined or contradicted judgments drawn from the open, unclassified sources.
That is one of the glories of the society the Founding Fathers bequeathed to us.
But how many ordinary Americans have the time to spend at least an hour reading the New York Times every day, 365 days a year, plus at least half a day each week reviewing the past week's Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, and Christian Science Monitor and at least spot-checking the Chicago Tribune and Los Angeles Times, plus monitoring major defense hearings broadcast on the C-Span network? How many can acquire beforehand the active-duty military experience and the professional military education required to make sense of what is read and keep that experience and education reasonably up to date by reading closely each month the privately published, but quasi-official U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings and Air Force magazine