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a paradox of the new strategic environment is that American military superiority actually

increases the threat of nuclear, biological, and chemical attacks against us by creating

incentives for adversaries to challenge us asymmetrically.”14

If the US is to be prepared for this threat, ironically heightened by its own

technological dominance, then it must dedicate the appropriate measures to prevent its

use, defend against it, and mitigate its overall effects. American public policy indicates

that it is the role of DoD to do all of these and more. According to the National Military


The continued proliferation of WMD, particularly chemical and biological weapons (CBW), has made their employment by an adversary increasingly likely in both major theater wars and smaller-scale contingencies. U.S. forces must have a counterproliferation capability balanced among the requirements to prevent the spread of WMD through engagement activities; detect an adversary’s possession and intention to use WMD; destroy WMD before they can be used; deter or counter WMD; protect the force from the effects of WMD through training, detection, equipment, and immunization; and restore areas affected by the employment of WMD through containment, neutralization, and decontamination. 15

So what is the DoD to do? It must follow a rational course. It must dedicate the

appropriate organizational structure and resourcing commensurate with the threat. This is

especially so at the strategic level. Because of its experience with WMD and the

requirements to interface with other federal agencies and direct its own services and

defense agencies, DoD must ensure its strategic organizational structure for WMD

defense is up to the task. Is DoD adequately organized at the strategic level to address

the evolving WMD threat? This thesis will attempt to answer that question.

1The White House, A National Security Strategy for a New Century 16.


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