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Former Secretary of Defense William Perry: My Journey at the Nuclear Brink

Published 22 October 2016

In his book My Journey at the Nuclear Brink, William Perry describes his lifelong passion to prevent nuclear war, including his experience as Secretary of Defense from 1994 to 1997. With George Shultz, Sam Nunn, and Henry Kissinger, he was co-author of a series of influential op-eds in the Wall Street Journal on the need to move toward a world free of nuclear weapons. He believes that the dangers posed by nuclear arms are now greater than ever, that action is urgently needed to reduce those dangers, and that nuclear weapons should be abolished as soon as possible.

In the New York Review of Books, California Governor Jerry Brown wrote: "I know of no person who understands the science or politics of modern weaponry better than William J. Perry. When a man of such unquestioned experience and intelligence issues the stark nuclear warning that is central to his recent memoir, we should take heed."

And the chairman of U.S. News & World Report, Mortimer Zuckerman, wrote: "After a long career in and out of government in which he was at the center of the policy imperative to prevent the use of these weapons - from the grim paradoxes in shoring up fragile deterrence to the enlightened promotion of successful arms control agreements during the Cold War and beyond - Perry warns us that our actions today are in no way commensurate with the growing nuclear danger, a peril that could change our lives in awful and barbaric ways if not end civilization outright."