The overarching question imparting urgency to this exploration is: Can U.S.-Russian contention in cyberspace cause the two nuclear superpowers to stumble into war? In considering this question we were constantly reminded of recent comments by a prominent U.S. arms control expert: At least as dangerous as the risk of an actual cyberattack, he observed, is cyber operations’ “blurring of the line between peace and war.” Or, as Nye wrote, “in the cyber realm, the difference between a weapon and a non-weapon may come down to a single line of code, or simply the intent of a computer program’s user.”
Within the ICBM force, the rhetoric of deterrence can sometimes seem disconnected from the required focus of the practitioners in the field. The gap between rhetoric and reality may contribute to a problem of identity in the U.S. ICBM force. One important key to motivating high performance is the articulation of a clear and consistent operational mission. In this Project on Managing the Atom Seminar, Lt. Col. Jay Folds, MTA/ISP Fellow, will present his current research.