Russian-American cooperation in weapons of mass destruction counterproliferation
Dabrowski, Richard S.
Yost, David S.
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This thesis examines the opportunities and risks associated with a new form of military cooperation between the United States and Russia: joint strategic special operations for counterproliferation contingencies--to seize and secure or to disable or otherwise neutralize weapons of mass destruction (WMD) facilities or WMD-armed terrorists. This thesis compares Russian and U.S. views of the future security environment, looking for areas of overlap that could serve as the basis for mutually acceptable cooperative approaches to military options--especially in areas in or around the former Soviet Union-- to deal with new WMD threats. The most effective military options might require the creation of a Russian-American response force similar to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Nuclear Emergency Search Team (NEST), expanded to be usable against a wide variety of WMD threats. This thesis analyzes the circumstances in which Russian-American SOF cooperation is more likely to succeed than U.S. unilateral action. The analysis concludes that information-sharing may be the most likely form of cooperation, although any Russian-American cooperative effort would reveal to the other side sensitive information about capabilities and vulnerabilities in that area of cooperation.
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