Seeking Security in an Insecure World

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9781442208049: Seeking Security in an Insecure World

This comprehensive yet concise introduction to international security explores the constantly changing conditions that lead to an insecure world. During the Cold War, the Soviet-American nuclear rivalry generated insecurity. Since then, state-based nuclear threats have diminished while the threat of non-state actors wielding weapons of mass destruction has increased. A global surge in mass-casualty terrorism, persistent and costly intrastate wars, and environmental threats have reshaped our thinking about security threats and how best to respond to them.

Now in a thoroughly updated edition, the text considers today's security agenda, including the threat posed by the spread of infectious disease, drug trafficking and competition for petroleum, ethnic rebellions, transnational criminal and terrorist organizations, and wars in cyberspace and on the ground against elusive individuals and shadowy organizations rather than states. The authors show, in other words, how the quest for security has become far more salient than it was during the euphoric days of the post-Cold War period and far more complicated than it was during the Cold War as threats are increasingly transnational, interconnected, and stateless.

Seeking Security in an Insecure World offers a broad overview of both traditional and "new" conceptions of security. With clear and lively prose, compelling examples, and solid scholarship, it engages both students of international relations and general readers who wish to gain a better understanding of what security means today and how it can best be achieved.

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About the Author:

Dan Caldwell is Distinguished Professor of Political Science at Pepperdine University.
Robert E. Williams Jr. is associate professor of political science at Pepperdine University.

Review:

PRAISE FOR THE FIRST EDITION Caldwell and Williams, both political scientists, put forth a distinctive new approach to the traditional concept of national security. . . . Highly recommended. (Choice)

PRAISE FOR THE FIRST EDITION This book deals with this oft quoted but little understood issue in an organized and scholarly yet lively manner. . . . In dealing with both traditional and contemporary sources of insecurity, this book provides light in an area commonly containing primarily heat. (Proceedings)

PRAISE FOR THE FIRST EDITION In their new book Seeking Security in an Insecure World, Dan Caldwell and Robert Williams focus our attention on a diverse set of vital issues on global and national security agendas. The clear and concise treatment of this complexity by Caldwell and Williams makes Seeking Security in an Insecure World a must read! (Paul R. Viotti)

PRAISE FOR THE FIRST EDITION This is must reading for all struggling to picture the coming security landscape—an informed and informative interpretation that is sophisticated and comprehensive yet normatively centered as well. It is the best existing concise treatment of this important topic for students and interested members of the public. Highly recommended for courses dealing with the issue of security. (Charles W. Kegley Jr.)

PRAISE FOR THE FIRST EDITION Seeking Security in an Insecure World is a unique and important contribution to the literature. No other book has the combination of scope and depth of treatment of the new global security agenda that Dan Caldwell and Robert Williams provide. Their text is insightful, engaging, grounded in theory as well as speaking to key policy issues—all in ways highly accessible for students. (Jentleson, Bruce W.)

PRAISE FOR THE FIRST EDITION In a world that is increasingly interconnected, the very concept of security requires redefinition and broadening. Dan Caldwell and Robert Williams not only offer a cogent explanation for why this is the case, they also present an excellent overview of the range and nature of the new threats. In doing so, they have provided a real service to scholars, policymakers, and interested laypeople alike. Scholars will benefit greatly from the discussion of why traditional state-based threats are limiting and a new security paradigm incorporating non-state threats is needed. Policymakers will gain from the analysis of the character of new threats, the danger of unintended consequences when employing traditional military responses to them, and the value of new forms of cooperation for containing and combating them. And interested citizens, after reading this thoughtful book, will both understand the challenges of security in a new century better and also be able to demand more imaginative and integrated responses from governments and non-governmental organizations. (Ambassador Dennis Ross)

PRAISE FOR THE FIRST EDITION Dan Caldwell and Robert Williams have taken on a daunting challenge: to make sense of the broad array of threats facing the United States and the rest of the world in the twenty-first century. They have succeeded admirably. Seeking Security in an Insecure World provides an accessible and thoughtful analysis of issues ranging from terrorism to infectious diseases to cyber warfare. (Lindsay, James M.)

PRAISE FOR THE FIRST EDITION In an age that's insecure not only about future threats but also about the very definition of security in this rapidly changing world, Caldwell and Williams offer a powerful way of seeking much better answers. They argue that, just as national economies have become increasingly globalized, so too must national thinking about security give way to more globalized perspectives. Reading this book convinces one that whatever might actually work to make our world more secure is sure to prove nothing like we have ever tried in the past. This is a timely and hugely important contribution to smart thinking about national and international security. (Tom Plate)

PRAISE FOR THE FIRST EDITION A major contribution that incisively analyzes the many new security issues that now dominate the international arena. This study fills a major gap in the literature and will become required reading for students and policy specialists. (George, Alexander L.)

Dan Caldwell and Robert Williams have written a superb survey on threats to international security and how public policies can ameliorate or exacerbate them. This is a thoughtful, wise, and accessible book. (Krepon, Michael)

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