Defining National Security: The Nonmilitary Aspects

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Defining National Security: The Nonmilitary Aspects

By Joseph J. Romm
Council on Foreign Relations Press, 1993
122 pp. $10.95
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The title says it all. The author looks at U.S. drug interdiction policy and the new notions of environmental, energy and economic security, shrugging aside the older, military conception of national security as having declining relevance in the new world. Romm defines a threat as anything that could "narrow the range of policy choices available to government," a definition so sweeping that one wonders what important foreign policy problem would not constitute a threat. An expanded article rather than a book, written in the first person (both singular and plural, the identity of the "we" being rather vague), it expresses an increasingly common view, but not particularly incisively.