Study #16

Deterrence in the 21st century

At first sight, deterrence reflects a simple idea: A credible threat of retaliation convinces potential attackers that the cost of an act of aggression will outweigh its benefit. That is how deterrence prevents war. A closer look at the concept, however, has raised questions ever since the beginning of the nuclear age. Against the backdrop of current security policy challenges, this study examines if and how the concept remains applicable.