Thesis Title

Finding the Cure: the New Challenges to Biological Warfare

Date of Graduation

Spring 2005


Master of Science in Defense and Strategic Studies


Defense and Strategic Studies

Committee Chair

William R. Van Cleave


It is widely predicted that in this century advances in genetics and biotechnology will revolutionize society and life as we know it. It is also recognized that enemy states and possibly terrorists may inflict great trauma upon the United States by using biological weapons against America’s civilian population. This thesis examines the implications of what has been termed the biotech century on the future of warfare, threats to America, and impact on American defense policy. The history of biological weapons will also be examined. Part two analyzes current strategies that the United States is employing to counter the threat of biological weapons. The four defense policy goals set forth by the 2001 Quadrennial Defense Review Report are reviewed to assess the measures taken thus far and those that are still needed to meet the rising threat of biological warfare. The United States must assure its allies and friends overseas of its commitment against the global use of biological weapons, dissuade proliferation by potential opponents, deter and threats of use, and, if all else fails, defend itself against an attack and limit its effects. Posing one of the single greatest dangers to the United States today, biotechnology demands sufficient attention and preparation to prevent severe damage to the United States and its ability to defend its international interests.


biological warfare, bioterrorism, U.S. defense policy, genetic engineering, Biological Weapons Convention

Subject Categories

Defense and Security Studies


© Jacquelyn B. Moseley