Bulletin News

SUNY Cortland Experts Weigh in on Nuclear Issues


The use of nuclear weapons is one of the most controversial and important issues facing the world today.

On Tuesday, Nov. 14, two experts will discuss U.S. policies toward North Korea’s development of nuclear weapons and Iran’s nuclear program at SUNY Cortland. The event begins at 1 p.m. in Brockway Hall Jacobus Lounge.

The panelists are David Duryea, the College’s vice president of finance and management and Edward Erickson Ph.D., the current scholar-in-residence of Cortland’s Clark Center for Global Engagement.

Duryea is a retired U.S. Navy rear admiral and possesses more than 30 years of executive leadership and management expertise. He served on four nuclear submarines and commanded the ballistic missile submarine USS Florida and the Naval Undersea Warfare Center, where he led 6,500 personnel in 15 locations across the U.S. and overseas.

Erickson is a retired professor of military history at the Marine Corps Command and Staff College, Quantico, Va., and is a retired U.S. Army lieutenant colonel. He served as commander of a NATO nuclear custodial detachment and as a nuclear target analyst. Erickson also served in Iraq in 1991 and 2003 and as a special assistant to the NATO Force commander in Bosnia in 1995.

Alexandru Balas, assistant professor and coordinator of international studies and the director of the Clark Center for Global Engagement, will serve as moderator.

The testing of nuclear weapons by North Korea has made headlines for years and has increased significantly in recent months. Iran traded its nuclear weapon-creating capacities for the lifting of economic sanctions in 2015. Yet the deal has its political detractors both among Western nations and in Iran.

“We have these two experts on campus who can talk in an informed way and give a realistic view of what could happen,” Balas said.

Panelists will discuss nuclear war theory and foreign policy, and share their own expertise on nuclear policies stemming from their unique military experiences.

The panel takes place three days after Veterans Day in hopes to better link SUNY Cortland and the greater Cortland community together.

“This is an interesting event for the larger community and especially for veterans in the community. We scheduled it a few days after Veterans Day, so that hopefully veterans will attend, too. We’re looking at more partnerships between the campus and community on global issues,” Balas said.

Balas hopes the talk will make students and the community better-informed American citizens by discussing “these two countries often portrayed as enemies.”

“This panel will help inform people about nuclear policy,” Balas said. “We also want them to understand the logic of why less powerful militaries want to pursue nuclear routes.”

For more information, contact Balas at 607-753-2250.

Prepared by Communications Office writing intern McKenzie Henry