Naval War College Review


Although we lived with the dangerous specter of nuclear attack for more than fifty years during the Cold War, concerns about the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) have virtually exploded into our consciousness in the past decade. Since the demise of the for- mer Soviet Union—once referred to as our “malefactor partner in the concept of mutually assured destruction”—our fears seem to focus far less on the threat of nu- clear holocaust, and more on the threat of attack by chemical or biological agents. The logical point of departure for this shift in focus seems to be the Persian Gulf War, when the world learned of a rogue nation seemingly bent on prolifer- ating these weapons of mass terror.