Saturday, February 17, 2007

Mr Strategist

"Three years ago "there was a lot of interest in, and concern about, the use of small pox as a weapon. I was involved in a meeting that included a number of bioweapons experts, and after considerable discussion, I asked how long it would take for a smallpox epidemic deliberately started in the U.S. to spread around the world. The answer was 'Not long.'

Then how practical are infectious diseases as bioweapons?... But I was struck by the fact experts in bioweapons are not strategists, and by the thought that if our experts hadn't thought of this, could we be sure that others, including terrorist organizations, had?"

Smallpox, in a nutshell, cannot rationally be used as a weapon because it would spread too quickly, a kind of self-inflicted wound and mutually assured destruction."

Who's doing the talking? Tom Schelling in an interview with WSJ by his student M Spence. (I do not know Spence is Tom's student until I read this story) Read more here. Tom's take on
China is very interesting as well.

Here is Tom's biography.

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