What is the Worst That
The Politics and Policy of
Thomas Sherlock, and
United States Military Academy
238 pages / paper / $37.95
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How do we think about—and plan for—the unthinkable? Contemplating the apocalypse has traditionally been a task reserved for prophets, poets, and philosophers. Today they are joined by statesmen and bureaucrats. As the modern state comes to oversee emergency management and disaster relief, real-world policymakers increasingly find themselves forced to envision the worst that can happen. To what degree do they succeed in doing so? How can individuals in an ordered society properly anticipate disorder? What are today’s worst case scenarios and to what degree is United States foreign policy prepared to respond to them?
The contributors to this volume address these and related questions, in essays that cast students as policymakers on the cusp of consequential decisions.
”It doesn’t matter if the potential threat is a cyberattack, terrorism, a natural disaster, or even, God forbid, zombies. In our currently vulnerable state, every scenario is a worst case scenario. And this is why asking this volume’s question—what is the worst that could happen?—is so important.”
— Max Brooks, author of World War Z, from the
Foreword to this volume