2005 Key Strategic Issues List (KSIL)

  • July 01, 2005
  • Dr Antulio J Echevarria II
  • Dr Antulio J Echevarria II

Half a decade into the new millennium, the strategic environment continues to change rapidly, and in important ways. Some of those changes, of course, challenge U.S. interests, while others advance them. And the challenges assume regular and, increasingly now, irregular forms. Yet, while the causes of change are many, the discernable patterns are few. It is all the more important, therefore, that the U.S. Army maintain a strategic perspective—that it take advantage of the collective insights of scholars and senior-level students both within the defense community and beyond. The Key Strategic Issues List (KSIL), developed at the U.S. Army War College by the Strategic Studies Institute (SSI), helps the Army identify and bring together those insights. SSI develops the draft list, based on input from its expert researchers, and vets it with the rest of the Army War College, the Army Staff, Army Major Commands, Army Component Commands, the Combatant Commands, and the Joint Staff. The various topic recommendations and comments SSI receives are worked into the final document, either for inclusion in the general topic areas or as part of agency-specific concerns found in the Expanded KSIL. The Key Strategic Issues portion of the KSIL identifies research topics considered essential to the Armand to the role of landpower in general; many are broad enough to encompass different research approaches, and to allow researchers to modify or expand the issues as appropriate. Similarly, the Expanded KSIL enables researchers to focus on the concerns of, or to benefit from the perspectives of, individual KSIL sponsors. The KSIL is meant tube extensive, but not exhaustive. No list could capture every issue of potential concern, particularly given the identified dynamic nature of today's strategic environment. The SSI points of contact herein maintain general oversight of their topic areas, and thus can recommend individual sponsors or subject matter experts.