Date of Award


Document Type

Masters Thesis

Degree Name


Organizational Unit

Josef Korbel School of International Studies

First Advisor

Tom Farer, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Ved Nanda, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Lewis Griffith

Fourth Advisor

Paul Viotti


Air power, B-21, Defense procurement, Long range bomber, Retrenchment, U.S. foreign policy


This thesis examines the effectiveness of the Northrop Grumman B-21 long range strike bomber in advancing the ability of U.S. policy makers to achieve national security objectives. The operational value of the B-21 is assessed through analysing its probable role in four hypothetical combat scenarios, and the relative effectiveness of the B-21 is measured alongside the potential performance of alternative systems. This operational analysis is augmented by a consideration of the shape of recent U.S. national security strategies, as well as the anticipated future security environment, which provides the foundation of an analysis of the ability of the B-21 to support U.S. security objectives within the context of U.S. policy makers' intended approach to foreign policy. This thesis concludes that the B-21 provides a limited increase in the effectiveness of U.S. military operations, and its procurement is incompatible with the anticipated future shape of U.S. security strategy and global interaction.

Publication Statement

Copyright is held by the author. User is responsible for all copyright compliance.

Rights Holder

Aidan Thomas Hughes


Received from ProQuest

File Format




File Size

183 p.


International Relations