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Director's Speaker Series
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Jeff McCausland
Back to the Future? Battlefield Nuclear Weapons in South Asia
Thursday, October 23, 2014, 03:30pm - 05:00pm
Mershon Center for International Security Studies
1501 Neil Ave. Columbus, OH 43201

Jeff McCausland

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Jeff McCausland is a retired colonel from the U.S. Army and currently holds a dual appointment as a distinguished visiting professor of research and Minerva Research Chair at the U.S. Army War College, as well a being a visiting professor of international security at Dickinson College in Carlisle, Penn.  McCausland serves as a senior fellow at the Stockdale Center for Ethical Leadership at the U.S. Naval Academy and the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs in New York.  

He is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point in 1972 and is also a graduate of the U.S. Army airborne and ranger schools. McCausland holds both a masters and Ph.D. from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University.  During his military career, McCausland served in a variety of command and staff positions both in the United States and Europe.  This included director for defense policy and arms control on the National Security Council Staff in the White House during the Kosovo crisis.  He also worked on the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe as a member of the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations, U.S. Army Staff, the Pentagon.  

McCausland has both published and lectured broadly on military affairs, European security issues, arms control, the Gulf War, and leadership throughout the United States and over 16 countries.  He has also served as a member of numerous panels on leadership and character development.  These include the Chief of Staff Army’s Blue Ribbon Panel on Training and Leader Development; the Character Review Panel for the Superintendent, U.S. Air Force Academy; as well as providing advice and assistance to the chief of staff of the Air Force’s Aerospace Leader Development Panel. 

McCausland is a senior fellow at the Clarke Forum at Dickinson College and a senior associate for the International Studies Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington.  He serves on the board of advisers to both the National Committee on American Foreign Policy in New York and the Hourglass Initiative.  He has been a national security consultant for CBS television and radio since 2003.  McCausland has also appeared on MSNBC, C-SPAN, CNN, Al Jazeera, the CBS Morning Show, Up To the Minute, as well as the CBS Evening News.  He is married to the former Marianne Schiessl, and they have three children – Tanya, Nicholas, and Phillip. 


Pakistan's decision to develop and deploy so-called "tactical nuclear weapons" is a new and dangerous development in South Asia.  These weapons are in addition to the over 100 nuclear weapons in the Pakistani arsenal aimed at its historical enemy – India.  Many experts believe this is part of a larger strategic effort by Pakistan to eventually become the third largest nuclear power after the United States and the Russian Federation.  This could be a "game changer" in terms of the potential impact on crisis escalation and the possibility that a terrorist organization could acquire one of these smaller nuclear devices.  It appears that this is motivated by a growing concern in Pakistan that it can no longer keep pace with India's expansion of its conventional forces and New Delhi’s adoption of a new doctrine – "Cold Start" or Proactive Operations.  

Where this might lead in terms of future weapons or doctrinal developments is unclear.  Still former President Bill Clinton once described the border between India and Pakistan as the "most dangerous place on the planet Earth," and this development makes it more dangerous.  It is imperative that the United States in concert with allies seek to dissuade Pakistan from this policy or at a minimum acquaints the Pakistani military with the potential problems that will undoubtedly occur.   



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