The Nuclear Relationship: Conventional Defense and Nuclear Posture in the Strategy of Deterrence

  • K.-Peter Stratmann


The aim of this symposium is to analyse alternative approaches and concepts for the improvement of Western conventional defense capabilities. There is a broad consensus that NATO ought to reduce its current over- reliance on potential early use of nuclear weapons. This objective should not, however, lead us to assume that all strategic functions of NATO’s nuclear options could be replaced or compensated for by a stronger or better organized conventional defense. Consequently, the following remarks focus on the political-strategic frame of reference, i.e., on such parameters that define the direction and latitude for the endeavor of this conference: modelling alternative force structures and operational concepts for conventional defense. Unfortunately, this subject cannot be left to the “non-political technical experts”, but must be addressed in a wider perspective. It cannot be analysed separately from the highly politicized nuclear dimension and from other structural aspects of NATO’s strategy of “flexible response”.


Nuclear Weapon Force Structure Offensive Operation Warsaw Pact Conventional Force 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • K.-Peter Stratmann
    • 1
  1. 1.Stiftung Wissenschaft und PolitikEbenhausenFederal Republic of Germany

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