Of the many persons who in one way or another helped the authors conduct this study and write this book, several stand out. First and foremost is research assistant Ross Rustici, whose exceptional knowledge of both China and strategic affairs is matched by his inquisitiveness, discipline, and energy as an analyst. The best way to sum up his contribution is to say that this book would not exist without him. When Ross left us to join the U.S. Government, his place was taken by Roxanne Bannon, our indispensable research assistant for the final stage of work. We thank them both profoundly. Institute for National Strategic Studies (INSS) Research Analyst Isaac Kardon also assisted in gathering materials, especially for chapter three.
Throughout this work, we relied on our colleague and counselor Hans Binnendijk, INSS Vice President for Research and Applied Learning, for both strong encouragement and intellectual challenge, drawn from his extraordinary career as a public servant, strategic thinker, and executive.
One of the keys to successful research is to engage merciless reviewers. Ours were James Mulvenon, Elaine Bunn, and Jonathan Pollack. Having worked with them before, we expected and got painstakingly thorough and tough reviews, with James concentrating especially on cyber issues, Elaine on nuclear and strategic issues generally, and Jonathan on China and Sino-American relations. The book is better because of them. We also benefited from feedback received on a December 2010 research trip to China and from comments following presentations for Office of the Secretary of Defense and Joint Staff audiences.
We are also especially grateful to Dennis Blair and Terry Pudas for sharing their wisdom on one of the thornier issues we faced: how to reconcile a seemingly unstoppable extension of conventional military conflict into cyberspace with a compelling need to avoid general cyber war. While the book’s ideas in this regard are ours to defend, they were influenced and improved by our exchanges with Blair and Pudas. Equally important was our access to Martin Libicki and his fertile mind. Bruce MacDonald, Michael Swaine, Dean Cheng, and Timothy Thomas were also generous with their time, informed comments, and valuable insights.
National Defense University provided the setting and support that made this work possible. The United States is blessed to have an official institution that makes possible diverse, dispassionate, and innovative research and analysis in the interest of national security, and we hope that this book will be a credit to it.
While these and other individuals and this institution enabled us to produce this book, the views are ours alone, not those of National Defense University, the Department of Defense, or the U.S. Government. We alone stand behind its content.