Surprise Attack and Disarmament



‘Disarmament’ has covered a variety of schemes, some ingenious and some sentimental, for co-operation among potential enemies to reduce the likelihood of war or to reduce its scope and violence. Most proposals have taken as a premise that a reduction in the quantity and potency of weapons, particularly of ‘offensive’ weapons and of weapons that either deliberately or incidentally cause great civilian agony and destruction, promotes this purpose. Some schemes have been comprehensive; others have sought to identify particular areas where the common interest is conspicuous, where the need for trust is minimal, and where a significant start might be made which, if successful, would be a first step towards more comprehensive disarmament. Among these less comprehensive schemes, measures to safeguard against surprise attack have, since the President’s first ‘open-skies’ proposal in 1955, come increasingly into prominence.


False Alarm Weapon System Inspection Scheme Potential Enemy Surprise Attack 
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© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 1970

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