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Organization, Regulations, and Courses 2021-22

GOVT 50.17 Weapons of Mass Destruction

This course examines the role of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) in international politics: specifically, nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons. Over the course of the quarter, students will explore a range of political questions related to these technologies. Why do states want WMD technology, and have these motivations changed over time? What are the effects of WMD technology on international politics? Do WMD deter conflict or make it more dangerous and frequent? What are the mechanisms for preventing the spread of WMD technology and how effective have they been? How real is the threat of WMD terrorism? In addressing these questions, the course will cover a wide range of historical cases and time periods, encompassing the United States, Europe, the Middle East, Asia, Africa, and examining the use of WMD in World War I, World War II, and more recent conflicts such as the Syrian Civil War.



Distributive and/or World Culture


The Timetable of Class Meetings contains the most up-to-date information about a course. It includes not only the meeting time and instructor, but also its official distributive and/or world culture designation. This information supersedes any information you may see elsewhere, to include what may appear in this ORC/Catalog or on a department/program website. Note that course attributes may change term to term therefore those in effect are those (only) during the term in which you enroll in the course.