International Order & Conflict

Reducing The Risk Of Nuclear War In The Nordic/Baltic Region

Northern Europe is currently experiencing escalating political and military tensions that are rekindling fears of war between Russia and NATO. Any such conflict would inherently include a risk of nuclear weapons use. The Stimson Center, partnered with Project High Hopes, is examining the results of such nuclear exchanges and, more importantly, developing initiatives to avoid such catastrophes.   

WHAT: A briefing on Stimson’s new report, “Reducing the Risk of Nuclear War in the Nordic/Baltic Region.” 

Barry Blechman, Co-Founder, Stimson Center
Dr. Barry M. Blechman is co-founder of the Stimson Center, served as chairman of Stimson’s Board from 1989 to 2007, and returned to the Board in 2014.  He also serves as a Trustee of Whittier College in Los Angeles.  Blechman founded DFI International Inc., a research consultancy, in 1984, and served as its CEO until the company’s sale in 2007. Blechman has more than fifty years of distinguished service in national security in both the public and private sectors. He has worked in the Departments of State and Defense, and at the Office of Management and Budget. During the Carter Administration, he was appointed by the President and confirmed by the Congress as assistant director of the US Arms Control and Disarmament Agency.  Among other boards and commissions, Blechman served on the Commission to Assess the Ballistic Missile Threat to the United States (1998-99), the Defense Policy Board (2002-06), and the Department of State Advisory Committee on Transformational Diplomacy (2005-08).  In the 1980s, he was principal drafter of the report of the Palme Commission, Common Security.

Alex Bolfrass, Stimson Nonresident Fellow, Managing Across Boundaries
Alex Bolfrass is a Ph.D. candidate at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of International Affairs working on a dissertation on intelligence assessments of nuclear weapons programs. This research compares the performance of intelligence agencies in the United States, Sweden, Switzerland, and the former East Germany. He is also the co-author of two forthcoming scientific papers on the implications of changes in climate for human conflict and is applying advanced natural language statistical techniques to investigate the evolution of diplomatic rhetoric related to nuclear weapons. Mr. Bolfrass is a Bradley Fellow and a Center for International Security Studies Fellow at the university. 

Laicie Heeley, Stimson Fellow, Budgeting for Foreign Affairs and Defense
Heeley is a Fellow with Stimson’s Budgeting for Foreign Affairs and Defense program. Her areas of expertise include U.S. budget process, defense strategy, nuclear weapons proliferation, and Iran. Prior to joining Stimson, Heeley was Policy Director at the Center for Arms Control and Non-Proliferation where her research focused on nuclear proliferation in emerging states such as Iran and North Korea, as well as budgeting and strategy at the Department of Defense. Heeley previously held positions at Physicians for Social Responsibility, The Counter Terrorist Finance Organization, and Global Green USA where her research focused on nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons in addition to the financing and structure of terrorist organizations.

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