A new generation of theatre nuclear forces in Europe
Krogh, Peter F. (Peter Frederic)
Person InterviewedReifenberg, Jan
Examines the future of NATO's theater nuclear weapons in the face of growing anti-nuclear protests in Europe.
For more than 30 years, theater nuclear weapons were a keystone of NATO's plan to defend Western Europe from the Soviet Union. As Soviet conventional and nuclear strength grew in Europe, however, American policymakers began to believe that more was needed to counter the Soviet threat. In 1979 the NATO allies announced a plan that would place Pershing II and Cruise missiles in Great Britain, Holland, Belgium, West Germany, and Italy. Despite the NATO governments' initial approval of the plan, mass demonstrations against the deployment of new American nuclear weapons erupted across Europe, creating a dangerous divergence of views within NATO that threatened to undermine the alliance. While American proponents of the deployment believed that threatening retaliation against any Soviet incursion into Europe made all of the NATO members safer, some Europeans feared that the new weapons only increased the risk of nuclear war. In an attempt to defuse the growing anti-nuclear campaign, President Reagan proposed that the U.S. and the Soviet Union remove all intermediate range nuclear missiles from Europe- a proposition that would eventually fail months later at the bargaining table in Geneva. On the eve of President Reagan's proposal, host Peter Krogh sits down with Assistant Secretary of Defense Richard Perle and West German Journalist Jan Reifenberg to discuss the future of theater nuclear weapons in Europe, as well as the current state of the NATO alliance.
Nuclear weapons -- Europe; North Atlantic Treaty Organization -- Military policy; Nuclear warfare; Deterrence (Strategy); Ballistic missile defenses -- United States; North Atlantic Treaty Organization -- Armed Forces; Tactical nuclear weapons -- Europe; Cold War; Defense and National Security; International Organizations; Theatre Nuclear Weapons; North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO); Tactical Nuclear Weapons; Ronald Reagan; Anti-Nuclear Movement;
Europe; Western Europe;
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