Enforcement handbook : enforcement of DOE nuclear safety by United States. Dept. of Energy

By United States. Dept. of Energy

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By United States. Dept. of Energy

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Introduction 7 believed to be, at least in the European theater, a superior Soviet conventional capability. S. nuclear guarantee. S. nuclear threats to protect those countries is being called into question. Certainly a nuclear deterrent will be needed by the United States as long as nuclear weapons exist, and potentially hostile nations may be tempted to use them. But the question is now seriously being raised whether nuclear forces can be limited primarily to the role of deterring nuclear attacks on the homeland.

We will have no very good way to answer that question until we know more about what the post-Cold War world is going to look like and how it will compare with what preceded it. But the end of the Cold War is certain to raise questions about the role of nuclear weapons in the future international system, and it is not too early to begin to think about what some of those questions might be. For example: 1. Assuming that significant reductions in nuclear arsenals take place over the next decade, what are the lowest numbers the great powers can agree on without removing the inhibitions nuclear weapons provide against the use of force by the great powers?

The United States has indicated its willingness to assist with the safe storage or dismantlement of nuclear weapons in the new states. Introduction 11 What Role Will Evolving Military/Nuclear Technology Play in the Future of Nuclear Weapons? From almost the beginning of the Cold War, the advancement of nuclearweapon technology has been a critical issue in both national and international politics. The development of thermonuclear weapons, "bomber gaps" and "missile gaps," the antiballistic-missile and multiple-independently-targeted-reentryvehicle (MIRV) deployment controversies of the late 1960s, the neutron bomb, the SS-18 and the "window of vulnerability," the SS-20 and the Pershing /l,and the Strategic Defense Initiative are a few prominent examples of nuclearweapons-related technologies that dominated the East-West political agenda for the past four decades.

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