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Mershon Center for International Security Studies

Global CrisisFaculty members at the Mershon Center for International Security Studies have always been among the most productive at The Ohio State University. In 2010-12, they published 30 books, edited 10 issues of academic journals, and authored 365 articles, chapters, essays, and reports.

Among the books are Global Crisis: War, Climate Change and Catastrophe in the Seventeenth Century (Yale, forthcoming) by Geoffrey Parker. In this book, Parker traces a series of revolutions, droughts, famines, invasions, wars, regicides, and government collapses to changing weather patterns from 1618 to the late 1680s. The crisis, which killed perhaps one-third of the world’s human population, has implications for today: Are we adequately prepared -- or even preparing -- for the catastrophes that climate change brings?

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David Cortright, director of policy studies at the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies, University of Notre Dame, visited the Mershon Center today to speak with Ohio State faculty and students as well as bestow the first Undergraduate Peace Award on two students.

In his talk“Winning Without War: Human Security Strategies for the 21st Century,” Cortright argued that the principles of nonviolence and human security offer realistic options for addressing contemporary security challenges and are superior to "old war" strategies for enhancing peace and promoting international cooperation.

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Jessica Stern, fellow at the Francois-Xavier Bagnoud Center for Human Rights at the Harvard School of Public Health, spoke at the Mershon Center today about her project "Perpetrators of Atrocities," in which she is conducting in-depth interviews with individuals who have been indicted or convicted of war crimes by the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY).

Stern is the author of Denial: A Memoir of Terror, named a best non-fiction book of 2010 by the The Washington Post, Terror in the Name of God: Why Religious Militants Kill, selected by The New York Times as a notable book of the year; The Ultimate Terrorists; and numerous articles on terrorism and weapons of mass destruction.

Her visit to the Mershon Center was organized by Mershon affiliate Peter Shane, Jacob E. Davis and Jacob E. Davis II Chair at Moritz College of Law.

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Gen. James N. Mattis, commander of U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM), visited the Mershon Center today to meet with university officials and speak to the Mershon faculty.

In a wide-ranging talk to the Mershon Center faculty, Mattis spoke about current events in the Middle East and South Asia from the perspective of CENTCOM. Faculty affiliates then had more than an hour to ask questions and speak with Mattis in a frank, candid exchange.

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