The Parlous Future of Non-Proliferation

The strategic context for countering the proliferation of what are unhelpfully called weapons of mass destruction (WMD), has changed dramatically without many observers quite noticing. As with so much of the international noise with which the world deals today, the changes predated the Trump admini

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Hybrid Threats: Challenges for Intelligence

Hybrid threats cover the range from propaganda to what is often called warfare in the “gray zone,” using proxies or “little green men.” Yet the focus of more recent concern is threats and attacks that seek to remain below the level of kinetic war. What challenges does this create for intelli

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Thinking Strategically About Cyber

Cyber is too important to be left to the technologists. It's the great challenge of our times, and never before have such powerful public interests been almost entirely in private hands.

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The Power of Words

While we can't do without language when discussing international relations, that same language can limit and often distort our understanding. We need language but we are also its prisoners.

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Learning Lessons from the North Korea Case

Topic number one at a recent Seoul gathering of North Korea experts and intelligence chiefs from a dozen countries was Kim Jong-un. What does he intend? Has he really made the decision to cash in his nuclear weapons for economic development and a place in global society? Or is this just another play

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The Special Intelligence Challenges of North Korea

North Korea continues to present a special set of challenges for intelligence. Those challenges will only increase if recent summitry leads to serious conversation about denuclearization. Is Kim Jong-un serious? Might he really be prepared agree to sharp constraints, or even abolition, of his nuclea

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Slow-Down at the Pentagon: What Would Baldwin Say Today?

In 1965, distinguished defense journalist Hanson Baldwin lamented that the Armed Force Procurement Regulations, the “bible” for military contractors, less than 125 pages in 1947, was 1,200 pages and growing daily by 1965. He would be both surprised and pleased to find that today’s bible, Defen

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Senior expert does U-turn on North Korean denuclearization

"I used to say he would never give up nuclear weapons. I take seriously now the argument that [North Korean leader Kim Jong-un] has completed his nuclear program, has got all the mileage he can, and wants to cash in." Greg Treverton, SMA Executive Advisor, and Professor of the Practice of Interna

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Addressing Hybrid Threats

The goal of hybrid threats is to achieve outcomes without actual war. The target is opposing societies, not combatants, and the distinction between combatants and citizens breaks down almost entirely. Tactics include the simultaneous employment of a range of instruments, from threats of war to propa

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The Russia Paradox

Russia is a failing petro-autocracy. Virtually everything Vladimir Putin has done temporarily extends Russia’s corrupt government but hastens its inevitable decline. Yet on the world stage, he has played a weak hand exceeding well. And he has done so increasing brazenly. The question is not what R

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