Rethinking Armageddon: Scenario Planning in the Second Nuclear Age

Addressing vulnerability and promoting security
Posted Apr 05, 2016 | Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, Andrew Krepinevich, Jacob Cohn

The emergence of new nuclear powers has introduced a shift from the bipolar Cold War nuclear competition to an increasingly multipolar competition among nuclear powers. This study by Andrew Krepinevich and Jacob Cohn for the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments (CSBA) focuses on three regions where tensions between nuclear and nonnuclear powers are increasing - Europe, the Middle East, and East Asia. To explore the potential consequences of these tensions degenerating into crises, they offer four near-term crisis stability scenarios and one that centers on the long-term competition between China, Russia, and the United States. The prospective challenges posed by the Second Nuclear Age, as reflected in these scenarios, are sobering.

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