The Alliance: More Options

A push for conventional weapons

From the very beginning of the cold war, Western military planners have been preoccupied by a single goal in case of war: keeping columns of Soviet tanks and troops from reaching the heart of Europe. When the U.S. held a decisive nuclear edge, NATO threats to use battlefield nukes against the Warsaw Pact's numerically superior armies were a very effective deterrent. But the Soviets continued to strengthen both their nuclear and their conventional forces. As a result, Europeans began to be concerned that the U.S. would not use its nuclear arms to defend the Continent, for...

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