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WMD in the Digital Age: Understanding the Impact of Emerging Technologies

By Natasha Bajema

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Emerging technologies are lowering barriers to effective development and use of WMD, creating new pathways for developing WMD, reducing the risk of detection of WMD activities, and offering nefarious actors new capabilities to cause mass effects. In this paper, Dr. Bajema explores three broad trends associated with emerging technologies that are fundamentally altering the WMD context, changing the threat space, and undermining the traditional tool box for countering WMD: these are digitization, convergence, and democratization. This paper describes each of these trends, explores their implications for WMD threats, and illustrates how they undermine our current toolbox for countering WMD. The paper concludes with recommendations for U.S. policymakers on important first steps to address these new national security challenges. READ MORE>>>