Strong National Defense and Foreign Policy

Government has no greater responsibility than ensuring the safety and security of Americans.

America First Policies believes that the federal government has no greater responsibility than ensuring the safety and security of Americans. In order to fulfill such a solemn duty, we must rebuild our military, increase defense spending, modernize the nuclear arsenal, and continually update our intelligence and cyber security capabilities. As we build closer diplomatic relations with our allies to protect American interests and build a more stable and peaceful world, we must also face head-on the threats of those who seek to do us harm, including ISIS and other radical Islamic terror groups, at home and abroad.

The Facts:

  • From 2011 to 2016, the U.S. defense budget was cut by 25 percent.
  • Years of budget cuts have resulted in a smaller and weaker military: In 2016, the U.S. military was smaller than at any time since 9/11.
  • While the U.S. has reduced its number of nuclear weapons by approximately 80 percent since the end of the Cold War, Russia and China have increased the size of their nuclear arsenals.
  • In the time since it declared its caliphate in June 2014 to February 2017, ISIS has conducted or inspired more than 140 terrorist attacks in 29 countries other than Iraq and Syria. The attacks have killed at least 2,043 people.


2016 Index of U.S. Military Strength, Heritage Foundation,

“The 2017 NDAA Should Begin Rebuilding America’s Military,” edited by Justin T. Johnson, Heritage Foundation, March 24, 2016,

Christopher M. Blanchard and Carla E. Humud, “The Islamic State and U.S. Policy,” Congressional Research Service, February 2, 2017,

Robert K. Knake, “A Cyberattack on the U.S. Power Grid,” Contingency Planning Memorandum No. 31, Council on Foreign Relations, April 3, 2017,

Hal Brands and Peter Feaver, “Was the Rise of ISIS Inevitable?” Survival (journal of the International Institute for Strategic Studies), vol. 59 no. 3, June–July 2017, pp. 7–54,

Arms Control Association, U.S. Nuclear Modernization Programs, Fact Sheets & Briefs, August 2017,

Read More:

Luis Martinez, “How Trump's National Security Memorandum Could Boost Military Readiness,” ABC News, January 27, 2017,

Joe Whited, “How Trump is achieving Reagan’s ‘peace through strength’ approach to foreign policy,” The Hill, February 13, 2017,

Uri Friedman, “North Korea: The Military Options,” The Atlantic, May 17, 2017,

Douglas Macgregor, “Toward an ‘America First’ foreign policy,” Washington Times, July 30, 2017,

Michael Dodge, “America desperately needs to modernize its nuclear weapons,” The Hill, August 10, 2017,


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