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Scott D. Sagan
Journal Articles

Problem of Redundancy Problem: Why More Nuclear Security Forces May Produce Less Nuclear Security, The

Scott D. Sagan
Risk Analysis, 2004 December 31, 2004

After the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, many scholars, journalists, and public officials expressed fear about the security of nuclear facilities in the United States.

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Journal Articles

Nuclear Dangers in South Asia

Scott D. Sagan
Forum on Physics & Society, 2004 April 1, 2004

On May 11 and 13, 1998, India tested five nuclear weapons in the Rajasthan desert. By the end of the month, Pakistan had followed suit, claiming to have detonated six nuclear devices at an underground facility in the Chagai Hills. With these tests, the governments in Islamabad and New Delhi loudly announced to the world community, and especially to each other, that they both held the capability to retaliate with nuclear weapons in response to any attack.

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Journal Articles

Learning from Normal Accidents

Scott D. Sagan
Organization and Environment, 2004 January 1, 2004

Normal Accidents' growing influence since 1984 on social science scholarship and across academic, business and governmental disciplines was not accidental. Author Charles Perrow intended to shake up the study of safety and bring organization theory into the forefront. This article examines ongoing debates about the management of technological systems, reviews the book's important seeds of theory, and discusses the theoretical and practical issues related to a world growing more complex and technologically hazardous.

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Books

The Spread of Nuclear Weapons: A Debate Renewed

Scott D. Sagan, Kenneth N. Waltz
W. W. Norton & Company, Inc., 2003 December 31, 2003

In The Spread of Nuclear Weapons: A Debate Renewed, professors Waltz and Sagan resume their well-known dialogue concerning nuclear proliferation and the threat of nuclear war. Kenneth Waltz, Senior Research Scholar in the Arnold A. Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies at Columbia University, expands on his argument that "more may be better," contending that new nuclear states will use their acquired nuclear capabilities to deter threats and preserve peace.

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Journal Articles

Madman Nuclear Alert: Secrecy, Signaling, and Safety in the October 1969 Crisis, The

Scott D. Sagan, Jeremi Suri
International Security, 2003 April 1, 2003

The history of the October 1969 alert demonstrates that even in this high-politics arena of nuclear diplomacy, presidential orders were actively fought against, sometimes manipulated or ignored, and often honored only in part. Other orders were interpreted and implemented in a more vigorous manner that best suited the organizational interests of the military commanders doing the interpretation.

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Journal Articles

Correspondence: Responding to Chemical and Biological Threats

Scott D. Sagan
International Security, 2001 April 1, 2001

The official U.S. government policy is to maintain "calculated ambiguity" about whether the United States would retaliate with nuclear weapons in response to an adversary's use of chemical weapons (CW) or biological weapons (BW) against U.S. allies, U.S. armed forces overseas, or the U.S. homeland. Since the 1991 Gulf War, numerous civilian and military leaders have stated that the United States might use nuclear weapons in response to CW and BW threats or attacks, and some have even stated that the United States will use nuclear weapons in such circumstances.

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Books

Origins of Military Doctrines and Command and Control Systems; and Conclusions: Planning the Unthinkable, The

Scott D. Sagan, Peter R. Lavoy, Lewis A. Dunn
Cornell University Press in "Planning the Unthinkable: How New Powers Will Use Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical Weapons", 2000 December 31, 2000

The proliferation of chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons is now the single most serious security concern for governments around the world. Peter R. Lavoy, Scott D. Sagan, and James J. Wirtz compare how military threats, strategic cultures, and organizations shape the way leaders intend to employ these armaments. They reveal the many frightening ways that emerging military powers and terrorist groups are planning the unthinkable by preparing to use chemical, biological, or nuclear weapons in future conflicts.

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Journal Articles

Commitment Trap, The: Why The United States Should Not Use Nuclear Threats to Deter Biological and Chemical Weapons Attacks

Scott D. Sagan
International Security, 2000 April 1, 2000

How should the United States deal with so-called rogue states that threaten to use chemical or biological weapons against the U.S. homeland or its troops abroad? Scott Sagan of Stanford University examines Washington's "calculated ambiguity doctrine," which holds that the United States does not rule out the use of nuclear weapons in response to a chemical or biological weapons attack. Sagan argues that the risks associated with this doctrine outweigh the benefits.

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Journal Articles

Why Do States Build Nuclear Weapons? Three Models in Search of a Bomb

Scott D. Sagan
International Security, 1997 January 1, 1997

Scott D. Sagan notes that the question of why states seek to build nuclear weapons has scarcely been examined, although it is crucial to efforts at preventing proliferation. He challenges the traditional realist assumption, accepted uncritically by many scholars and policymakers, that states seek to acquire or develop nuclear weapons primarily for military and strategic reasons. Sagan examines alternate explanations for the demand for nuclear weapons.

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Books

The Spread of Nuclear Weapons: A Debate

Scott Sagan, Kenneth Waltz
W.W. Norton & Company, 1995 April 1, 1995

Book description from the publisher:

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Working Papers

Nuclear Weapons Safety After the Cold War: Technical and Organizational Opportunities for Improvement

Scott D. Sagan
CISAC, 1994 August 1, 1994

The end of the Cold War creates both new challenges and new opportunities for improving nuclear weapons safety. Several post Cold War developments are likely to have negative effects on the safety of existing nuclear weapons arsenals. These potentially dangerous trends include an apparent decline of morale in the laboratories and military organizations responsible for weapons safety, the potential proliferation of nuclear weapons to new states, the likely discontinuation of nuclear testing for safety related purposes, and the introduction of new nuclear weapons operations, including

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Policy Briefs

Civil-Military Relations and Nuclear Weapons

Scott D. Sagan
CISAC, 1994 June 1, 1994

When a state develops a nuclear arsenal, these destructive weapons must be initially integrated into existing military forces and initially managed through existing civil and military institutions. The subsequent relationship between nuclear weapons and civil-military relations in possessor states is complex, however, and presents an important two-way puzzle. First, it is important to ask how existing patterns of civil-military relations in nuclear states have influenced the likelihood of nuclear-weapons use. Some scholars believe that military officers are less war-prone and hawkish than

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Working Papers

Reducing the Risk of Dangerous Military Activities

General George L. Butler, Major General Anatoli V. Bolyatko, Scott D. Sagan
CISAC, 1991 July 1, 1991

Operational arms control can take many forms, and one of the most important is direct military-to-military talks. The 1989 Dangerous Military Activities agreement, in which military officers headed negotiations for the first time, should not be considered the final step in improving U.S.-Soviet military-to-military relations.  It should be seen instead as a major step forward toward a much deeper and wider network of discussions and agreements which reduce the likelihood of misunderstandings and potential incidents between the militaries of the two states.

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Commentary

Our Red Lines and Theirs

Benjamin Buch, Scott D. Sagan
Foreign Policy,
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Policy Briefs

Worst Practices Guide to Insider Threats: Lessons from Past Mistakes

Scott D. Sagan, Matthew Bunn
American Academy of Arts & Sciences,

In this research paper published by the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Stanford Policeical Science Professor and CISAC Senior Fellow, Scott Sagan, and Matthew Bunn, a professor of practice at the Harvard Kennedy School, write that insider threats are perhaps the most serious challenge that nuclear security systems face today.

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