Editor's note: This essay, "Han, Greedo, and a Strategy of Prevention," is excerpted from the new book Strategy Strikes Back: How Star Wars Explains Modern Military Conflict from Potomac Books. The volume — which includes work by more than 30 soldiers, scholars, and diplomats, along with a foreword by former general Stanley McChrystal — is available now online and in bookstores.

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Photo illustration by Aaron Provost

Ask any expert in nuclear game theory: It's not exactly mai-tais and Yahtzee. And when you’re dealing with a 100-kiloton hydrogen bomb, it can be hard to, as they say, put...the the box. That's why President Trump recently tasked the Defense Department with drawing up a new set of military options for dealing with Kim Jong Un's nuclear threat. But Pentagon officials are apparently worried that giving Trump too many options for taking out Rocket Man will only increase the likelihood of an all-out war with North Korea. Don’t worry, Mr. President, we’ve got you covered. Here are a few suggestions:

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Photo via Associated Press

The U.S. is "prepared" to execute a preemptive first strike against North Korea, using conventional weapons, "should officials become convinced that North Korea is about to follow through with a nuclear weapons test," several anonymous U.S. intelligence officials told NBC News this evening.

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