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.”
Jayita Sarkar is an Associate with the Project on Managing the Atom and an Assistant Professor at Boston University (BU)'s Pardee School of Global Studies, where she teaches diplomatic and political history. Her expertise is in 20th century South Asia, the history of U.S. foreign relations, nuclear technologies, and connected partitions. Her research has been published in the Journal of Cold War Studies, Cold War History, International History Review, Journal of Strategic Studies, Nonproliferation Review, and elsewhere. She is also the founding director of the Global Decolonization Initiative at BU's Pardee School.
In 2020–2021, she is on sabbatical from Boston University to make progress on her second book project as an Ernest May Fellow in History & Policy and as an affiliate with the Weatherhead Initiative on Global History at Harvard University. This project, "Light Water Capitalism: The Rise and Fall of U.S. Global Power," examines the U.S. government's export of light water reactors from the 1950s to the 1980s to expand its global power through nonproliferation.
Her first book, Ploughshares & Swords: India's Nuclear Program in the Global Cold War (Cornell University Press, forthcoming, 2022) examines the first forty years of India's nuclear program through the prisms of geopolitics and technopolitics.Last Updated: Jul 1, 2021, 3:21pm