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The British Nuclear ExperienceThe Roles of Beliefs, Culture and Identity$
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John Baylis and Kristan Stoddart

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780198702023

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198702023.001.0001

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NATO Modernization Plans, SDI, and the End of the Cold War

NATO Modernization Plans, SDI, and the End of the Cold War

Chapter:
(p.170) 9 NATO Modernization Plans, SDI, and the End of the Cold War
Source:
The British Nuclear Experience
Author(s):

John Baylis

Kristan Stoddart

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198702023.003.0010

Chapter 9 deals with the parallel developments relating to the modernization of theatre and short range nuclear missiles, together with British views regarding American ideas about a Strategic Defence Initiative (SDI), which it was believed had the potential to undermine the credibility of the newly purchased Trident force as soon as it was deployed. The chapter ends with a discussion of the policies of the Major administration and the impact of the end of the Cold War on thinking about British nuclear capabilities. It also examines the ‘letters of last resort’, which would only be read should the worst happen and Britain be destroyed.

Keywords:   theatre nuclear forces, Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI), credibility, Major, Cold War

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