Super Bugs, Resurgent and Emerging Diseases, and Pandemics: A National Security Perspective
INST FOR NATIONAL SECURITY STUDIES US AIR FORCE ACADEMY CO
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While not often considered, superbugs may pose a greater threat to U.S. national security than terrorists or WMDs. Superbugs are those bacteria that have developed immunity to a wide number of antibiotics, and along with emergent and resurgent diseases, and pandemics they may be a greater threats to our population and to the effective functioning of our military. In the context of globalization, it is difficult if not impossible to contain diseases within national boundaries. International cooperation has become a critical component in addressing world health issues. It is the opinion of these authors that health issues, of necessity, need to be regarded as security issues--security, broadly defined. Disease has only recently featured prominently in debates on security, and this has likely resulted from a convergence of two new and salient features of security debates. First, transnational threats, such as those posed by terrorist networks, have heightened awareness of the need to control WMD--and biological weapons are clearly in this category. Second, discourse on security has been diversified and has called for an expanded notion of what security means. In particular, the debate calls for including individual security, as well as the security of territory and the sovereign state.
- Medicine and Medical Research
- Chemical, Biological and Radiological Warfare