Excerpts from the Pentagon’s February 18, 1992 draft of the Defense Planning Guidance for Fiscal Years 1994-1999.
Defense Strategy Objectives
Our first objective is to prevent the reemergence of a new rival, either on the territory of the former Soviet Union or elsewhere, that poses a threat on the order of that posed formerly by the Soviet Union. This is a dominant consideration underlying the new regional defense strategy and requires that we endeavor to prevent any hostile power from dominating a region whose resources would, under consolidated control, be sufficient to generate global power. These regions include Western Europe, East Asia, the territory of the former Soviet Union, and Southwest Asia.
There are three additional aspects to this objective: First, the US must show the leadership necessary to establish and protect a new order that holds the promise of convincing potential competitors that they need not aspire to a greater role or pursue a more aggressive posture to protect their legitimate interests. Second, in the non-defense areas, we must account sufficiently for the interests of the industrial nations to discourage them from challenging our leadership or seeking to overturn the established political and economic order. Finally, we must maintain the mechanisms for deterring potential competitors from even aspiring to a larger global role. An effective reconstitution capability is important here, since it implies that a potential rival could not hope to quickly or easily gain a predominant military position in the world….
Regional Threats and Risk
With the demise of a global military threat to US. interests, regional military, including possible conflicts arising in and from the territory of the former Soviet Union, will be of primary concern to the US in the future. These threats are likely to arise in regions critical to the security of the US and its allies, including Europe, East Asia, the Middle East and Southwest Asia, and the territory of the former Soviet Union. We also have important interests at stake in Latin America, Oceania and sub-Saharan Africa. In both cases, the US will be concerned with preventing the domination of key regions by a hostile power….
Middle East and Southwest Asia
In the Middle East and Southwest Asia, our overall objective is to remain the predominant outside power in the region and preserve US and Western access to the region’s oil. We also seek to deter further aggression in the region, foster regional stability, protect US nationals and property, and safeguard our access to international air and seaways. As demonstrated by Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait, it remains fundamentally important to prevent a hegemon or alignment of powers from dominating the region. This pertains especially to the Arabian Peninsula. Therefore we must continue to play a strong role through enhanced deterrence and improved cooperative security….
We will seek to prevent the further development of a nuclear arms race in the Indian subcontinent. In this regard, we should work to have both countries, India and Pakistan, adhere to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and to place their nuclear energy facilities under International Atomic Energy Agency safeguards. We should discourage Indian hegemonic aspirations over the other states of South Asia and on the Indian Ocean. With regard to Pakistan, a constructive US-Pakistan military relationship will be an important element in our strategy to promote stable security conditions in Southwest Asia and Central Asia. We should therefore endeavor to rebuild our military relationship given acceptable resolution of our nuclear concerns….
Source: New York Times, March 8, 1992.