Daniel Post

Visiting Scholar in International and Public Affairs
Areas of Expertise Nuclear Weapons, US Foreign Policy
Areas of Interest International Relations; Nuclear Strategy; Escalation Dynamics; Nuclear Policy; Decision Making


CDR Daniel Post is a Permanent Military Professor assigned to the Strategy and Policy Department at the U.S. Naval War College. He received a B.S. in Mathematics from the United States Naval Academy (with Honors), an M.A. in National Security and Strategic Studies from the U.S. Naval War College (with Highest Distinction), an M.A in Political Science from Brown University, and a Ph.D. in Political Science (International Relations) from Brown University. His research focuses on nuclear strategy and policy, deterrence, escalation dynamics, limited nuclear war and conflict termination. This includes studies of past wargaming and military exercises to explore potential escalation dynamics in limited nuclear wars. Additionally, he conducts experimental survey work and interview-based research centered on nuclear deterrence strategies and escalation dynamics. He is a former Navy Helicopter Pilot and his most recent assignment was as nuclear strike advisor and the chief of strike advisor training in the Global Operations Center at U.S. Strategic Command.


CDR Post studies various topics related to nuclear strategy and policy and the role of nuclear weapons in international relations. This includes research on nuclear deterrence theory; nuclear doctrines and policy; nuclear strategy; potential escalation dynamics in nuclear war; nuclear decision making; and the role of nuclear weapons in war termination. He also does research into the psychology of deterrence, the source of deterrence preferences, and researches how leaders and policy makers (as well as the public) understand and pursue deterrence in different ways. His research includes survey experiments, elite interview work, and the analysis of wargaming and crisis simulations.


“Coercion: Deterrence and Compellence”, Profiles in Strategy Podcast, March 2023, https://digital-commons.usnwc.edu/profiles-in-strategy/27/

“The Cold War”, Profiles in Strategy Podcast, available at: https://digital-commons.usnwc.edu/profiles-in-strategy/21/ (or on Spotify); February 2023

The Value and Limits of Nuclear Deterrence, U.S. Naval Institute, Proceedings, Online, January 2023 https://www.usni.org/magazines/proceedings/2023/january/value-and-limits-nuclear-deterrence

The Prospects Of Limiting Nuclear War And The Strategy Of “Escalate To De-Escalate” – A Research Note, The Ratty Blog, May 2021 https://therattyblog.com/2021/05/25/the-prospects-for-limiting-nuclear-war-and-the-strategy-of-escalate-to-de-escalate-a-research-note/ “Deterring North Korea,” War

On The Rocks, January 2021 https://warontherocks.com/2021/01/deterring-north-korea/


“Strategy and Policy,” Permanent Military Professor, U.S. Naval War College Fall 2021 – Present

Strategy and War Course: Winter 2021-2022; Fall 2022; Fall 2023

“Introduction to International Relations,” Teaching Assistant to Dr. Rose McDermott, Brown University, Spring 2021

“Introduction to International Relations,” Teaching Assistant to Dr. Rose McDermott, Brown University, Fall 2019

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Watson welcomes largest-ever cohort of military fellows

The Watson Institute recently welcomed a new cohort to its Military Fellows Program for the 2023-2024 academic year. The six new fellows will spend the next year immersed in Watson's scholarly community, engaging with students and faculty, taking classes, giving special lectures, attending seminars and conducting research.
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