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New and unpredicted technologies are emerging at an unprecedented pace around the world. Communication of those new discoveries is occurring faster than ever, meaning that the unique ownership of a piece of new technology is no longer a sufficient position, if not impossible. In today's world, recognition of the potential applications of a technology and a sense of purpose in exploiting it are far more important than simply having access to it. Technological surprise has and will continue to take many forms. A plethora of new technologies are under development for peaceful means but may have un- tended security consequences and will certainly require innovative counterme- ures. A relevant example is the tremendous development in biotechnology that has occurred since the advent of recombinant DNA and tissue culture-based processes in the 1970s. If US government agencies and the defense and academic commu- ties had more clearly recognized the potential for biotechnology to affect fun- mental security and warfighting doctrines 20 years ago, the situation today could be very different. Defense against chemical and biological weapons - from both states and nonstate actors - currently presents a threat that is difficult to predict and for which traditional solutions are increasingly less effective. Nanotechnology has emerged as a well-funded discipline that, like biote- nology, carries the potential for groundbreaking applications and the potential for unpredictable harm. The world is likely 20 years away from the full impact of the nanotechnology on defensive capabilities.
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