Clausewitz and Counterproliferation: Defeating, Deterring and Disarming Rogues Possessing Weapons of Mass Destruction

Date of Graduation

Spring 2003


Master of Science in Defense and Strategic Studies


Defense and Strategic Studies

Committee Chair

William Van Cleave


The contemporary strategic situation is characterized by a revolution in military affairs in the U.S. military, and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction to rogue states, which try to overthrow the status quo and threaten U.S. vital interests. Counterproliferation, understood herein as the non-cooperative reduction with military means of the threat from weapons of mass destruction, will therefore become more important in the future for U.S. policymakers. There are several ways of denying rogue states advantages from acquiring weapons of mass destruction. These include the ability of U.S. troops to fight and win with limited casualties against enemies using weapons of mass destruction and to defend the U.S. homeland, the deterrence of their use both in war and peace, and the preventive destruction of production facilities. To implement these strategies, the U.S. military needs new technical capabilities related to protection, counterforce capabilities, and nuclear retaliation. Nevertheless there remain distinct technical, operational, legal and political limits to each of these strategies.

Subject Categories

Defense and Security Studies


© Stephan C Fruehling