Columbus State’s Hallock Lecture Features Chemical Weapons Expert

COLUMBUS, Ga. — A chemical weapons expert who’s also a senior fellow at the Washington, D.C. Center for Nonproliferation Studies will speak at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 26 at Columbus State University’s Cunningham Center.

Amy Smithson’s appearance is part of CSU’s Col. Richard R. Hallock Lecture Series. The public is invited to attend the free lecture in Cunningham’s Blanchard Hall.

Smithson specializes in in-depth field research on issues related to dual-use chemical and biological technologies, weapons proliferation, threat reduction strategies, defense and homeland security. Smithson’s work focuses on practical steps to reduce threats and enhance civilian and military defense, preparedness and response capabilities, often via alliances that cross international borders or combine public and private sector forces.

Before joining the Center for Nonproliferation Studies, she worked at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and the Henry L. Stimson Center, where in January 1993 she founded the Chemical and Biological Weapons Nonproliferation Project. Previously, she worked for Pacific-Sierra Research Corporation and the Center for Naval Analyses.

Her latest work, “Germ Gambits: The Bioweapons Dilemma, Iraq and Beyond,” debunks myths about how United Nations Special Commission inspectors uncovered Iraq’s covert bioweapons program after the 1991 Gulf War.

Smithson earned a Ph.D. in political science at George Washington University, an M.A. in international relations at Georgetown University and bachelor’s degrees in political science and Russian at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill.

Smithson’s lecture, made possible by a gift from the Richard R. Hallock Foundation, is coordinated by Columbus State’s Department of Political Science and Public Administration. Hallock was a much-decorated paratrooper in World War II, a personal aide for intelligence to Gen. Lucius D. Clay, who oversaw the post-war occupation of Berlin, and the youngest major to be a battalion commander in Korea.

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