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Strategy for an Atomic Monopoly

  • Lawrence Freedman
Part of the Studies in International Security book series (SIS)

Abstract

Americans were accustomed to viewing international politics, which up to 1940 was to all intents and purposes European politics, with a certain detachment. The European propensity to war was symptomatic of its dominance by reactionary and decadent elites and the persistence of imperialist instincts. Furthermore, there was little reason to view war as a grim struggle for survival, let alone a time for defiant resistance. The United States’ industrial and economic resources were so vast that there were few doubts that, once she put her mind to the task, any enemy would be eventually overwhelmed. The United States was the weary policeman, slow to be roused and loath to get involved in the internecine quarrels of European states. Once aware of danger and into action, she was unbeatable.

Keywords

Clay Europe Petroleum Assure Expense 
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Notes

  1. 1.
    Walter Lippmann, ‘Why we are disarming ourselves?’, Redbrook Magazine (September 1946), p. 106.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Bernard Brodie, ‘The atom bomb as policy-maker’. Foreign Affairs, XXVII:1 (October 1948), p. 21.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Willlam Fox, The Superpowers: The United States, Britain and the Soviet Union and Their Responsibility for Peace (New York: Harcourt & Brace, 1944), p. 102.Google Scholar
  4. 6.
    ‘Spaatz Report’, The Implications of the Atom Bomb for the Size, Composition, Organization and Role of the Future Air Force (23 October 1945); Joint Staff Strategic Survey, Statement of the Effect of Atomic Weapons on National Security and Military Organization (12 January 1946). See Frank Klotz, The US President and the Control of Strategic Nuclear Weapons, unpublished D.Phil. Thesis (Oxford, 1980).Google Scholar
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    ‘X’, The sources of Soviet conduct’. Foreign Affairs, XXV (July 1947); George F. Kennan, Memoirs, 1925–1950 (Boston, Little Brown: 1967), p. 358.Google Scholar
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    Walter Millis (ed.). The Forrestal Diaries (London: Cassell & Co. 1952), p. 45.Google Scholar
  7. 10.
    NSC-30, United States Policy on Atomic Weapons (10 September 1948). Reprinted in Etzold and Gaddis, op. cit., p. 341. It was suggested that a decision against employment ‘might gain the praise of the world’s radical fringe’.Google Scholar
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    In 1949, cited in Raymond L. Garthoff, Soviet Military Doctrine (Illinois: The Free Press, 1953), p. 174.Google Scholar
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    Colonel-General of Aviation Nikitin, cited in Raymond L. Garthoff, Soviet Strategy in the Nuclear Age (New York: Praeger, 1958), pp. 173–4.Google Scholar
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    On the Soviet atom bomb project see Arnold Kramish, Atomic Energy in the Soviet Union (Stanford, Calif.: Stanford University Press, 1960).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The International Institute for Strategic Studies 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lawrence Freedman

There are no affiliations available

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