BRISTOL, R.I. – Every day brings with it the risk that someone will use, by accident or design, one of the 17,000 nuclear weapons in the world today. Many think such threats ended with the Cold War – but in the hands of states both stable and unstable, these weapons remain an ongoing nightmare.
Yet in his forthcoming book “Nuclear Nightmares: Securing the World Before It Is Too Late,” global security expert Joseph Cirincione offers hope – many countries have abandoned nuclear weapons programs, and global arsenals are just one quarter of what they were during the Cold War. Can these trends continue? Or are we on the brink of a new arms race – or worse, nuclear war?
On Tuesday, Nov. 5, members of the public are invited to spend an evening with Cirincione as part of the President’s Distinguished Speakers Series at Roger Williams University. In a presentation titled “Today’s Nuclear World: Our Major Challenges, Our Possible Solutions,” Cirincione will share his expertise, from the unique viewpoint of someone who has served on President Obama’s nuclear policy team and who leads an organization intent on reducing nuclear threats.
“Countries have been trying to put the genie back in the bottle ever since the U.S. first used a nuclear weapon in 1945,” says RWU President Donald J. Farish. “The widespread concern regarding Iran’s emerging nuclear capacity is a clear demonstration of the centrality and urgency of this issue to the interests of the U.S. and the world in general – and no one knows more about the complexities of nuclear disengagement and nonproliferation than Joe Cirincione.”
A widely quoted expert on global security, Cirincione is the president of Ploughshares Fund, a public grant-making foundation focused on nuclear weapons policy and conflict resolution. In addition to this year’s “Nuclear Nightmares,” he is the author of “Bomb Scare: The History and Future of Nuclear Weapons” and has written and edited five other books on nuclear weapons and national security policy.
Cirincione serves on the Secretary of State’s International Security Advisory Board, is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and teaches at the graduate School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. He worked for nine years in the U.S. House of Representatives on the professional staff of the Committee on Armed Services and the Committee on Government Operations.
The Nov. 5 presentation will take place in the School of Law, Room 283, on the University’s Bristol campus at One Old Ferry Road. Doors open at 7 p.m. and the event will begin at 7:30 p.m. A book signing with the author will immediately follow the presentation. The event is free and open to the public; no tickets are required. Any questions can be directed to (401) 254-3201.
Launched in 2011, the President’s Distinguished Speakers Series at Roger Williams University invites thought leaders from a wide range of disciplines to share perspectives, inspire conversations and enrich the intellectual lives of students, faculty and staff at Roger Williams as well as members of the local community. As part of the series, each guest is invited to devote much of the daylong visit to direct engagement with students in classroom sessions, offering RWU students unique opportunities for one-on-one interactions with some of the world’s leading authors, scholars, artists and public servants.