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The Science of Conflict
An Exhibit on Warfare

The Science of Conflict
  • The Art of War (by )
  • The Victory Disease 
  • Elements of Trench Warfare : Bayonet Tra... (by )
  • The Tale of the Great Persian War, From ... (by )
  • Use of Mines in Trench Warfare : From th... (by )
  • The Chemical Warfare Service : Chemicals... (by )
  • Modern Warfare (by )
  • The Histories of Herodotus (by )
  • The Psychoneuroses of War (by )
  • Thucydides (by )
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The Science of Conflict:  An Exhibit on Warfare

This exhibition demonstrates the frailty and vulnerabilities of humankind.  Violence, social disruption and economic and physical destruction of lives are the abhor-able consequences of warfare.  However, without war...there could be no peace.  In life, there is always a struggle with achieving balance.  In our many Collections, there are opportunities to read about what the most significant minds (from military generals to philosophers to the writings of religious orders to the greatest literary novelists, about war and peace.
Chinese Philosophy
Chinese Philosophy
Warfare is the application of military power to win a conflict between two nations or groups of nations through armed violence, social disruption, and economic destruction. Warfare techniques are not just an exercise of brute physical force and chaos.  Warfare is also an intellectual act of documenting and studying organization and tactics. 

Modern Warfare, written by Henry Smith Wiliams, states that the mariner’s compass, the printing press and the gunpowder were instrumental in the growth and spread of war across the world.  The compass allowed people to explore different lands to conquer and facilitated the exchange of war techniques.  China first invented gunpowder, which diffused to India and then to Europe 
(Modern Warfare, Henry Smith Williams).  The philosophy of Chinese military general Sun-Tzu was gained from his experience as a military general and strategist during the Spring and Autumn Period, a volatile period of ancient China ("Sun-Tzu," World Heritage Encyclopedia).  Sun-Tzu is credited as the author of The Art of War, an influential book on military strategy.  The quote “The art of war is of vital importance to the state...” opens this important work, highlighting the perspective of generals and world leaders (The Art of War, Sun-Tzu). This work has influenced politics, business, sports, and is considered to be the foundation of modern warfare for hundreds of years.  Another book:  The Victory Disease, quotes Sun-Tzu as having written, “To secure ourselves against defeat lies in our own hands, but the opportunity of defeating the enemy is provided by the enemy himself...."  This article challenges the U.S. Army to not fall prey to the Victory Disease which is when a general disdains and underestimates the enemy due to relying on previous winning strategies and failing to employ new strategies.  In addition, the "victory disease" afflicts a general when he does not recognize the enemy's’ capacity to learn their opponents strategies, and revise plans accordingly (The Victory Disease, Military Review).  
Greek Philosophy
Greek Philosophy
In the book, Modern Warfare, Williams also discusses how the printing press was instrumental in the spread of ideas to support efforts to conquer other lands. Warfare techniques also includes an intellectual component in order to preserve memory of why and how warfare occurs.  Herodotus was a Greek historian known as "The Father of History" who collected research materials systematically and then arranged them into a histio-graphic narrative (Modern Warfare, Henry Smith Williams and "Herodotus," World Heritage Encyclopedia).  His seminal work The Histories of Herodotus reveals that Herodotus was interested in understanding the “why” of war, rather than the “how” ("Herodotus," World Heritage Encyclopedia).  For example, The Tale of the Great Persian War, From the Histories of Herodotus, by G.W. Cox, describes Herodotus creating “word pictures” of landscapes or military campaigns based on more poetic descriptions than on accurate depictions (The Tale of the Great Persian War, From the Histories of Herodotus).  On the other hand, Thucydides, an Athenian historian, political philosopher and general is known as "The Father of Scientific History" ("Thucydides," World Heritage Encyclopedia).   He studied the same wars that Herodotus studied, but used different methods. In the work Thucydides, the historian carefully examined documents and interviewed eyewitnesses, to empirically reveal the tactics and stratagems employed during each war (Thucydides, Thucydides).

Modern Warfare
Modern Warfare
Mechanized warfare transformed warfare into a science that can be applied through innovation of technology, organization of soldiers, and manipulation of the environment, to be dangerous to the enemy.  The so-called “War to End All Wars,” also known as World War I, revealed the devastation that came with new technological advances ("The War to End War," World Heritage Encyclopedia).  Elements of Trench Warfare: Bayonet Training is a training manual for troops to learn how to prepare the battle ground before with trenches and landmines, and how to use a bayonet against an opponent during a battle (Elements of Trench Warfare: Bayonet Training, Henry Smith Waldron).  

E. Kleber Brooks, author of The Chemical Warfare Service: Chemicals in Combat, defines chemical warfare as the employment of smoke, flame and incendiary munitions and gas offensive and defensive munitions.  This book traces each Chemical Warfare Service (CWS) activity, such as preparedness, administration and logistics, and each of the combat functions, and discusses how chemical warfare was deployed in Europe, North Africa and the Pacific (
The Chemical Warfare Service: Chemicals in Combat, E. Kleber Brooks).  Chemical Warfare was deployed differently in regions because individuals in command did not hold the same conception of the operating culture.  For instance, in the book titled, Use of Mines in Trench Warfare: From the French School of St. Cyr (published by Army War College), discusses how mines were used as “listening posts” and as defensive systems.  The carnage of mechanized warfare also influenced military health sciences (Use of Mines in Trench Warfare: From the French School of St. Cyr, Army War College).  William A.Turner, editor of the The Psychoneuroses of War, discusses how the stresses and strain of war affected soldiers’ nervous system, a condition called “Shell Shock.”  Military Surgeons found that when the soldiers found themselves in a place of safety, they would react to the stress via paralysis,  tremor or other hysterical symptoms.

Works Cited
Army War College.  Use of Mines in Trench Warfare: From the French School St. Cyr.   Washington:  United States GPO, 1917. 

Brooks, E. Kleber.  (n.d.)   The Chemical Warfare Service: Chemicals in Combat.  Washington:  Center of Military History.

Psychoneuroses of War, The.  Ed. Turner, William Aldren.  London:  University of London Press, 1918. 

Sun-Tzu.  The Art of War.  Trans. & Ed. Lionel Giles, M.A.  (n.p.)  1910.

"Sun Tzu."  World Heritage Encyclopedia.  WorldLibrary.org.  Web.  2014.  

Thucydides.  Thucydides.  Trans. and Ed. John William Donaldson.  Volume 1.  Harper & Brothers, 1861. 

"Thucydides."  World Heritage Encyclopedia.  WorldLibrary.org.  Web.  2014. 
 
"Victory Disease The."  Military Review, July-August 2003. 

Waldron, William Henry.  Elements of Trench Warfare: Bayonet Training.  Appleton, 1917. 

"The War to End War."  World Heritage Encyclopedia.  WorldLibrary.org.  Web.  2014.  

Williams, Henry Smith.  Modern Warfare New York:  Hearst's International Library Company, 1915. 
Warfare Collections
Warfare has been a philosophical subject to assist in the memory and planning of war; its mechanization has increased the scientific application of weapons to maximize chances for victory.  The human impact of war has also been documented over the years and across cultures, revealing how warfare is not just about planning and execution, but also includes attending to its after effects.   

Explore more on the history of human knowledge on warfare through these collections:



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Military Science


  • Un pékin sur le front (by )
  • High-Throughput Assay System for the Dis... (by )
  • The Principles of Strategy : Illustrated... (by )
  • The Wrack of the Storm (by )
  • Nash Praises Troops, Passes Torch to Mei... (by )
  • Untitled : Photograph 8B29192V, 1935 (by )
  • Untitled : Photograph 8E04563V, 1935 (by )
  • Extracts from Minutes of Proceedings and... (by )
  • Light Artillery Drill, Hand Battery, Wes... (by )
  • The Wound Dresser; A Series of Letters W... (by )
  • Charleston, South Carolina. Club House a... (by )
  • Dutch Gap Canal, Photograph Number 33498... (by )
  • President Wilson's State Papers and Addr... (by )
  • Untitled : Photograph 8C28902V, 1935 (by )
  • Abraham Lincoln : Military Order of the ... (by )
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Naval Science


  • The Life of Thaddeus Stevens : A Study i... 
  • Recueil de documents militaires allemand... (by )
  • Some Notes of the Past, 1870-1891 (by )
  • Dod Financial Management Regulation (by )
  • The Fountain of Sultan Ahmed Iii, Photog... (by )
  • Wheat Fields Near Havre, Montana, Photog... (by )
  • Bulletin of the World Health Organizatio... (by )
  • The Holbrook News : Volume 1, Feb 1916 (by )
  • Comparison of Cloud Statistics from Spac... (by )
  • Instructions : Vol. 136 Volume Vol. 136 (by )
  • Untitled : Photograph 8C00756V, 1935 (by )
  • Untitled : Photograph 8C14356V, 1935 (by )
  • Provincial State Papers : Benicia. MIlIt... Volume Tomos LIII-LXXVII, 1829-1834 (by )
  • Americas National Archives Journals : Co... (by )
  • Kohle Ist Brot (by )
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Disarmament Documents


  • Multiple Activation Pathways of Benzene ... (by )
  • Limb Malformations and Abnormal Sex Horm... (by )
  • Assessment of the Mutagenicity of Phthal... (by )
  • Air Pollution and Daily Mortality in a C... (by )
  • The Earths Open Wounds Abandoned and Orp... (by )
  • Institute of Arctic Biology University o... (by )
  • China the Next Environmental Super Power... (by )
  • Association between Air Pollution and Ad... (by )
  • Loud Noise Is Generally Considered an En... (by )
  • Human Genetics, Environment, And Communi... (by )
  • Environmental Health Perspectives, Vol. ... (by )
  • Randomization in Cancer Clinical Trials ... (by )
  • Comparative Acute and Subchronic Toxicit... (by )
  • Environmental Factors Altering Thyroid F... (by )
  • Environmental Health Perspectives, Vol. ... (by )
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Political Science


  • A Community Civics : A Text-Book in Loya... (by )
  • Congress: is This One of Those Strict Ac... (by )
  • Untitled : Photograph 8C29729V, 1935 (by )
  • Portrait and Biographical Album of Wapel... (by )
  • Government Auditing Standards Amendment ... (by )
  • Speeches of the Hon. Jefferson Davis, Of... (by )
  • The way of unity and peace 
  • Recollections of sixteen presidents from... (by )
  • The Fisheries Dispute; A Suggestion for ... (by )
  • The Columbian Jubilee, or, Four centurie... (by )
  • Profile of Selected Demographic and Soci... (by )
  • Umatilla Maiden (by )
  • Lodge in the Woods, Photograph 4A31108V (by )
  • A Week in the White House with Theodore ... (by )
  • Studies in Comparative Religion: Salvati... (by )
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Top 100 books on Government


  • The Bolsheviki and World Peace (by )
  • The Letters of Junius 
  • The English Works of Thomas Hobbes of Ma... (by )
  • Why wars come; or, Forms of government a... (by )
  • Polybii Historiae (by )
  • Robert's Rules of Order Pocket Manual of... (by )
  • Prince, The (Version 2) (by )
  • Two Treatises of Civil Government (by )
  • The Declaration of Arbroath 
  • The Magna Carta (by )
  • The Rights of the British Colonies Asser... (by )
  • The Prince (by )
  • Virginia Declaration of Rights and Cardi... (by )
  • Between Past and Future : Six Exercises ... (by )
  • Institutes of Natural Law : Being the Su... Volume Vol. 1 (by )
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History


  • Abraham Lincoln; A History : Vol. 3 Volume Vol. 3 (by )
  • The War, Its Causes and Consequences (by )
  • Untitled : Photograph 8C31702V, 1935 (by )
  • Cedars. Open Mountain Sweep Below the Ce... (by )
  • Portrait of Edward MacDowell, Facing Rig... (by )
  • Die Entstehung des Ausschliesslichen Wah... (by )
  • The Animal Kingdom, Arranged According t... (by )
  • A Summary of the Rights of British Ameri... (by )
  • The South Saxon Diocese, Selsey-Chichest... (by )
  • Admiral Phillip; The Founding of New Sou... (by )
  • THE SOUTHERN LAW REVIEW AND CHART OF THE... (by )
  • Storia di S. Caterina da Siena e del pap... (by )
  • Théatre d'Aristophane: avec les fragmens... (by )
  • Two Years before the Mast, And Twenty-Fo... (by )
  • Bulletin Socit Agricole, Scientifique et... Volume Vol. 7 (by )
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Military and Armed Forces Library Collection


  • High Accuracy Radar Proximity Sensor (by )
  • Chapter 22 Cost Finding (by )
  • Status of U.S. Interagency Review of U.S... (by )
  • Bae Systems North America Innovating for... (by )
  • Nato Maintenance and Supply Agency: Part... (by )
  • Export Control of High Technology (by )
  • Facilities Sustainment, Restoration and ... (by )
  • Ready for What and Modernized against Wh... (by )
  • Affected Environment (by )
  • Assessment of Dod Counterterrorism Inter... (by )
  • Report to the United States Congress: Im... (by )
  • Army Rdt&E Budget Item Justification (R2... (by )
  • Exhibit R-2, Rdt&E Budget Item Justifica... (by )
  • Appointing Commissioned Officers (by )
  • Adjusting Rates of Exchange for Foreign ... (by )
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Air Force Journal of Logistics Collection


  • Air Force Journal of Logistics : 2006 Volume 31, Issue 4 (by )
  • Air Force Journal of Logistics : 2008 Volume 33, Issue 1 (by )
  • Air Force Journal of Logistics : 2007 Volume 32, Issue 3 (by )
  • Logistics Dimensions : 2003 (by )
  • Logistics Dimensions : 2004 Volume 1 (by )
  • Air Force Journal of Logistics : 2009 Volume 34, Issues 1 & 2 (by )
  • Air Force Journal of Logistics : 2006 Volume 31, Issue 1 (by )
  • Air Force Journal of Logistics : 2008 Volume 33, Issues 3 & 4 (by )
  • Air Force Journal of Logistics : 2009 Volume 2009 Year in Review (by )
  • Air Force Journal of Logistics : 2006 Volume 31, Issue 3 (by )
  • Vehicle Maintenance Safety : A Guide for... (by )
  • Logistics Dimensions : 2004 Volume 2 (by )
  • Air Force Journal of Logistics : 2007 Volume 32, Issue 4 (by )
  • The Logistics of War : A Historical Pers... Volume Aug-00 (by )
  • Air Force Journal of Logistics : 2005 Volume 30, Issue 2 (by )
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Army Magazine Collection


  • Army Magazine : November 2005 Volume 55, Issue 11 (by )
  • Army Magazine : November 2003 Volume 53, Issue 11 (by )
  • Army Magazine : May 2006 Volume 56, Issue 5 (by )
  • Army Magazine : February 2006 Volume 56, Issue 2 (by )
  • Army Magazine : March 2004 Volume 54, Issue 3 (by )
  • Army Magazine : April 2007 Volume 57, Issue 4 (by )
  • Army Magazine : December 2002 Volume 52, Issue 12 (by )
  • Army Magazine : August 2007 Volume 57, Issue 8 (by )
  • Army Magazine : June 2004 Volume 54, Issue 6 (by )
  • Army Magazine : January 2001 Volume 51, Issue 1 (by )
  • Army Magazine : April 2010 Volume 60, Issue 4 (by )
  • Army Magazine : April 2002 Volume 52, Issue 4 (by )
  • Army Magazine : September 2004 Volume 54, Issue 9 (by )
  • Army Magazine : June 2001 Volume 51, Issue 6 (by )
  • Army Magazine : August 2003 Volume 53, Issue 8 (by )
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Defense AT & L Magazine Collection


  • Defense at & L Magazine : July-August 20... Volume July-August 2004 (by )
  • Defense at & L Magazine : March-April 20... Volume March-April 2005 (by )
  • Defense at & L Magazine : January-Februa... Volume January-February 2008 (by )
  • Defense at & L Magazine : September-Octo... Volume September-October 2009 (by )
  • Defense at & L Magazine : March-April 20... Volume March-April 2010 (by )
  • Defense at & L Magazine : January-Februa... Volume January-February 2011 (by )
  • Defense at & L Magazine : November-Decem... Volume November-December 2010 (by )
  • Defense at & L Magazine : September-Octo... Volume September-October 2008 (by )
  • Defense at & L Magazine : July-August 20... Volume July-August 2011 (by )
  • Defense at & L Magazine : March-April 20... Volume March-April 2004 (by )
  • Defense at & L Magazine : January-Februa... Volume January-February 2009 (by )
  • Defense at & L Magazine : November-Decem... Volume November-December 2009 (by )
  • Defense at & L Magazine : Special Human ... Volume Special Human Capital 2009 Issue (by )
  • Defense at & L Magazine : November-Decem... Volume November-December 2008 (by )
  • Defense at & L Magazine : November-Decem... Volume November-December 2004 (by )
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Joint Force Quarterly (JFQ) Journal Collection


  • Joint Force Quarterly (Jfq) : Issue 63, ... Volume Issue 63 (by )
  • Joint Force Quarterly (Jfq) : Issue 57; ... Volume Issue 57 (by )
  • Joint Force Quarterly (Jfq) : Issue 2; A... Volume Issue 2 (by )
  • Joint Force Quarterly (Jfq) : Issue 6; A... Volume Issue 6 (by )
  • Joint Force Quarterly (Jfq) : Issue 52; ... Volume Issue 52 (by )
  • Joint Force Quarterly (Jfq) : Issue 60; ... Volume Issue 60 (by )
  • Joint Force Quarterly (Jfq) : Issue 7; S... Volume Issue 7 (by )
  • Joint Force Quarterly (Jfq) : Issue 3; W... Volume Issue 3 (by )
  • Joint Force Quarterly (Jfq) : Issue 4; S... Volume Issue 4 (by )
  • Joint Force Quarterly (Jfq) : Issue 58; ... Volume Issue 58 (by )
  • Joint Force Quarterly (Jfq) : Issue 56; ... Volume Issue 56 (by )
  • Joint Force Quarterly (Jfq) : Issue 54; ... Volume Issue 54 (by )
  • Joint Force Quarterly (Jfq) : Issue 5; S... Volume Issue 5 (by )
  • Joint Force Quarterly (Jfq) : Issue 59; ... Volume Issue 59 (by )
  • Joint Force Quarterly (Jfq) : Issue 62; ... Volume Issue 62 (by )
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Military Review Journal Collection


  • Miltary Review : July-August 2008 Volume July-August 2008 (by )
  • Miltary Review : November-December 2008 Volume November-December 2008 (by )
  • Miltary Review : January-February 2011 Volume January-February 2011 (by )
  • Miltary Review : March-April 2008 Volume March-April 2008 (by )
  • Miltary Review : July-August 2010 Volume July-August 2010 (by )
  • Miltary Review : Special Edition : Octob... Volume Special Edition; October 2006 (by )
  • Military Review : September-October 2011 Volume September-October 2011 (by )
  • Miltary Review : November-December 2009 Volume November-December 2009 (by )
  • Miltary Review : May-June 2009 Volume May-June 2009 (by )
  • Miltary Review : July-August 2009 Volume July-August 2009 (by )
  • Miltary Review : July-August 2007 Volume July-August 2007 (by )
  • Miltary Review : Ethics Reader Special E... Volume Ethics Reader Special Edition 2010 (by )
  • Miltary Review : November-December 2010 Volume November-December 2010 (by )
  • Miltary Review : May-June 2007 Volume May-June 2007 (by )
  • Miltary Review : September-October 2009 Volume September-October 2009 (by )
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NATO Review Journal Collection


  • Nato Review; Issue 1 and 2; Spring/Summe... Volume Issue 1 & 2; Spring/Summer 2000 (by )
  • Nato Review; Issue 3; Autumn 1999 Volume Issue 3; Autumn 1999 (by )
  • Nato Review; Issue 4; Winter 1999 Volume Issue 4; WInter 1999 (by )
  • Nato Review; Issue 1; Spring 1998 Volume Issue 1; Spring 1998 (by )
  • Nato Review; Issue 4; Winter 2003 Volume Issue 4; WInter 2003 (by )
  • Nato Review; Issue 2; Summer 2003 Volume Issue 2; Summer 2003 (by )
  • Nato Review; Issue 2; Summer 1999 Volume Issue 2; Summer 1999 (by )
  • Nato Review; Issue 2; Summer 1998 Volume Issue 2; Summer 1998 (by )
  • Nato Review; Issue 3; Autumn 2002 Volume Issue 3; Autumn 2002 (by )
  • Nato Review; Issue 4; Winter 2002 Volume Issue 4; WInter 2002 (by )
  • Nato Review; Issue 3; Autumn 2003 Volume Issue 3; Autumn 2003 (by )
  • Nato Review; Issue 1; Spring 2002 Volume Issue 1; Spring 2002 (by )
  • Nato Review; Issue 1; Spring 2001 Volume Issue 1; Spring 2001 (by )
  • Nato Review; Issue 1; Spring 1999 Volume Issue 1; Spring 1999 (by )
  • Nato Review; Issue 3; Autumn 2001 Volume Issue 3; Autumn 2001 (by )
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Naval Aviation Journal Collection


  • Naval Aviation News : May-June 1987 Volume May-June 1987 (by )
  • Naval Aviation News : January 1971 Volume January 1971 (by )
  • Naval Aviation News : September 1966 Volume September 1966 (by )
  • Naval Aviation News : January-February 2... Volume January-February 2000 (by )
  • Naval Aviation News : November-December ... Volume November-December 1997 (by )
  • Naval Aviation News : July-August 1999 Volume July-August 1999 (by )
  • Naval Aviation News : September 1965 Volume September 1965 (by )
  • Naval Aviation News : January-February 1... Volume January 1995 (by )
  • Naval Aviation News : June 1967 Volume June 1967 (by )
  • Naval Aviation News : February 1966 Volume February 1966 (by )
  • Naval Aviation News : March 1971 Volume March 1971 (by )
  • Naval Aviation News : June 1978 Volume June 1978 (by )
  • Naval Aviation News : February 1947 Volume February 1947 (by )
  • Naval Aviation News : February 1948 Volume February 1948 (by )
  • Naval Aviation News : September 1981 Volume September 1981 (by )
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Nuclear Weapons Journal (NWJ) Collection


  • Nuclear Weapons Journal (Nwj); Issue 1; ... Volume Issue 1; 2006 (by )
  • Nuclear Weapons Journal (Nwj); Issue 2; ... Volume Issue 2; 2006 (by )
  • Nuclear Weapons Journal (Nwj); November-... Volume November-December; 2003 (by )
  • Nuclear Weapons Journal (Nwj); Issue 2; ... Volume Issue 2; 2005 (by )
  • Nuclear Weapons Journal (Nwj); Issue 1; ... Volume Issue 1; 2007 (by )
  • Nuclear Weapons Journal (Nwj); Issue 1; ... Volume Issue 1; 2005 (by )
  • Nuclear Weapons Journal (Nwj); Summer-Fa... Volume Summer-Fall; 2004 (by )
  • Nuclear Weapons Journal (Nwj); Winter; 2... Volume Winter; 2004 (by )
  • Nuclear Weapons Journal (Nwj); Issue 1; ... Volume Issue 1; 2008 (by )
  • Nuclear Weapons Journal (Nwj); July-Augu... Volume July-August; 2003 (by )
  • Nuclear Weapons Journal (Nwj); May-June;... Volume May-June; 2003 (by )
  • Nuclear Weapons Journal (Nwj); January-F... Volume January-February; 2003 (by )
  • Nuclear Weapons Journal (Nwj); September... Volume September-October; 2003 (by )
  • Nuclear Weapons Journal (Nwj); Spring; 2... Volume Spring; 2004 (by )
  • Nuclear Weapons Journal (Nwj); March-Apr... Volume March-April; 2003 (by )
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