Three core arguments have been made in this study. First, since the mid-1980s the terms of the mainstream debate on strategic matters have moved in the direction of common security. Some ideas that were once considered naive and impractical (e.g. the de-targeting of nuclear missiles) have now been accepted even by many officials. Second, and notwithstanding the previous point, practical efforts to reshape strategic planning according to the new security agenda have tended to be rather more conservative than the idea of common security implies. The practice of strategic reform has been strongly circumscribed by the persistence of traditional concerns and mindsets inherited from another age. In short, although there has apparently been movement towards common security, we have not arrived there. The third core argument was that in order to revitalise the concept of common security it is necessary to recast its conceptual underpining.
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