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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Frederick M. Lorenz
SIS 421
Seattle Campus

National Security and International Affairs

Major military aspects of contemporary international politics. Uses and limitations of military capabilities for sustaining a stable international order and national security. Processes by which states detect and assess threats to their security; practice of deterrence; transfer of arms among states; pursuit of arms control. Recommended: one SIS or international relations course.

Class description

Since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, there has been renewed interest in the challenges facing America in the 21st century. Not since Rome has any nation had so much military, economic and cultural power, but this does not easily lead to national security and a stable international order. What role should America play in the world? Are alliances necessary, or must we be prepared to act unilaterally in the national interest? The course will explore the sources and development of national security policy: Defining national interests and shaping the strategic environment, Regional security issues including NATO enlargement, transition of the states of the former USSR, and the ethno-political wars in the former Yugoslavia, An analysis of current threats and contingencies such as major theater wars and nuclear proliferation, and the development of a new national security policy and the war against terrorism . Two of the themes of the course will be international law and international human rights, and there will be an exploration of their relationship to national security policy. The lecturer, F.M. Lorenz, served as legal advisor to peace support operations in Somalia, Bosnia and Kosovo. He is a former Professor of Political Science at the National Defense University in Washington D.C, and teaches courses in international law and the law of war.

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

Lecture and discussion.

Recommended preparation

Recommended: one SIS or international relations course. Interest in US history, diplomacy; awareness of international news and current events.

Class assignments and grading

Three papers on approved topics are required, two five-page papers and one ten-page paper, there is no final exam.

Eighty percent of the grade is based on papers, twenty percent on class participation.


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by M Jane Meyerding
Date: 06/14/2002