The Future of Land-based Strategic Weapons: Part I

  • Peter J. Sharfman
Part of the International Institute for Strategic Studies Conference Papers book series (IISSCP)


The world has now lived with strategic nuclear missiles for a generation. From one point of view, this fact bears testimony to the short-sightedness, lack of imagination and reckless optimism of the political leadership of the major powers. These missiles should be viewed as a success precisely because not one of them has ever been fired in anger. But whether one believes in the balance of terror or finds it horrifying (or, as in the case of the author of this Paper, both), there is general agreement that nuclear strategic missiles are likely to remain with us for some time. Moreover, many observers suspect that in some future international crisis, the decisions as to whether these missiles would or would not be used might hinge upon the details of their capabilities and deployments. For this reason, controversies over the nature and shape of strategic missile deployments continue to engage the attention of a far wider audience than those who must design the missiles, find ways of basing them, and find ways of paying for them.


Pearl Harbor Enemy Attack Missile Launch Nuclear Missile Deterrent Threat 
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Copyright information

© International Institute for Strategic Studies 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • Peter J. Sharfman

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