Historic Lessons of National Security in War & Peace – NSEC 504

CG • Section 8WK • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020 • Modified 07/28/2020

Course Description

This course examines historic successes and failures in the application of national security, and discusses deterrence postures in WMD, the onset of cyber threats and operations, and future threats based on historic successes and failures. The course considers intelligence successes and failures in a historic context.


NSEC 501


This course examines the need and importance of understanding history—both the successes and failures. It is from these important lessons that students can help prepare for a future that has returned to great power competition; a world that continues to be plagued with WMD, and the onset of new cyber and space threats that change the dynamics of future peace and possible conflict.

Measurable Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Describe the major themes of grand strategies or national security strategies and other pertinent strategies across the range of national security arenas.
  2. Summarize the intelligence failures and successes regarding Pearl Harbor and the Battle of Midway.
  3. Evaluate the Cuban Missile Crisis (CMC) regarding a variety of successes and failures of national security in a variety of areas (e.g., intelligence, national security strategy).
  4. Evaluate the recent changes in the 2017 National Security Strategy, 2018 National Defense Strategy, other strategies (e.g., cyber, WMD), and their relationships to the rise of great power competition, ethics and a Christian worldview.
  5. Examine a resurgent Russian and China’s rise to power based on historic successes and failures and different worldviews.

Course Assignment

Textbook readings, articles, videos, presentations/notes

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in Module/Week 1.

Discussion Board Forums (3)

Discussion boards are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, the student is required to provide a thread in response to the provided prompt for each forum. Each thread must be 500 words and demonstrate course-related knowledge. In addition to the thread, the student is required to reply to 2 other classmates’ threads. Each reply must be 250 words.

Analysis Paper

This paper contains 3 parts:

Part 1 – Topic Selection. The student will choose a topic from those supplied and provide justification as to why they chose that topic in 250-750 words in current APA format.

Part 2 – Annotated Bibliography. The student will compile a minimum of 8-10 scholarly sources that he/she plans to use to support their final paper and write annotations of 100 words for each in current APA format

Part 3 – Final Submission. The student will write a 2,500-3,000 word (10-12-page) paper in current APA format that focuses on s critical national security topic. The paper must include at least 10-12 references in addition to the course textbooks, presentations, in the applicable modules and the Bible.

Historical Review Papers (3)

The student will write a 1,500-2,000 word (6-8-page) historical review paper in current APA format that focuses on comparing and assessing key national security documents from two different timeframes. The paper must include at least 6-8 references in addition to the course textbooks, presentations, in the applicable modules and the Bible.

Midterm and Final Exams (2)

Each exam will cover the material for the assigned module(s)/week(s). Each exam will be open-book/open-notes, and focus on short essay, medium essay, case study questions, and have a 3-hour time limit.