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Intelligence and U.S. Foreign Policy: Iraq, 9/11, and Misguided Reform

Intelligence and U.S. Foreign Policy Iraq, 9/11, and Misguided Reform By Paul R. Pillar An Analytical Review By Chris Rottenberg Paul Pillar shows that intelligence reforms, especially the measures enacted since September 11 can be deeply misguided. The attempts at reforming intelligence performance from a political standpoint often miss the sources that actually underwrite failed […]

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Nuclear Weapons Postures: Why Some Nations Flaunt Nukes While Others Conceal Them

Why does North Korea flaunt its nuclear status, while Israel hides its identity as a nuclear power? Has the United States ever been ready to fire at a moment’s notice? These are interesting questions and are important to understand in order to more accurately measure the relative power of different countries. There are three regional […]

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Why Leaders Lie

This article is a book review of John J. Mearsheimer’s 2011 book Why Leaders Lie. “I think the inherent right of the Government to lie to save itself when faced with nuclear disaster is basic” (Mearsheimer, 2011, p. 31). This statement was made in the aftermath of the Cuban Missile Crisis by Arthur Sylvester, assistant secretary […]

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How Effective is the UN in Counter-Terrorism Operations?

The role of the United Nations (UN) counter-terror strategy seems to primarily involve aiding its members (national governments) with strategy prior to an attack and then providing assistance in response to actual terror attacks. Many see the UN as largely a talking shop; this image is not currently alleviated when the topic of counter-terror arises. […]

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James Bond Goes…Corporate?

This article is a book review of Eamon Javers’ book Broker, Trader, Lawyer, Spy. While the directors of intelligence agencies for Western governments top out at well under $200K annually, spies who move from the public sector to the private world can earn more than double their former bosses’ salaries. This is an example of […]

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Global Counter-Terrorism: How US allies are coping with terror – France, Canada, and Australia

This is the second and final segment of a previous post. To see the original, click here: France In France the Direction de la Surveillance du Territoire or Department of Territorial Surveillance (DST) serves the same function as MI5 does in England. The central difference between the two organizations is that MI5 has some oversight, […]

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Global Counter-Terrorism: How US allies are coping with terror – United Kingdom

Global Counter-Terrorism: How US allies are coping with terror – United Kingdom No single approach to counter-terrorism is a silver bullet. As such, each country facing terrorism must take into account the specific variables attributable to their individual country. These variables include the kind of threat they face from the context of threat level, as […]

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Policing the World and the Transformers

The Benefits and Consequences of a Superpower’s Global Defense Strategy The “Transformers” is only a cartoon and more recently a highly popular big-screen movie franchise. But can the show be used as an analogy for debate over the “policing of the world” today? I personally saw an immediate connection after watching the trailer and finally […]

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Chinese Nuclear Strategy: Peace or War?

“We want to have not only more planes and heavy artillery, but also the atomic bomb. In today’s world, if we don’t want to be bullied, then we cannot do without this thing” (Fravel & Medeiros, 2010, p. 61). This was a statement by Mao Zedong, the founder of the modern Chinese state, back in […]

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US Nuclear Weapons: Should the US ever nuke first, ask questions later?

Why doesn’t the United States simply nuke its opponents? In addition to the politically unacceptable collateral damage caused, this is easily answered by the fear of nuclear escalation – that is, the rise in seriousness of war from conventional troops and bombs to all-out nuclear war. A more realistic question is one asking in what […]

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