Interview: Admiral William Crowe: Of War and Politics

Admiral WILLIAM CROWE, America's top military man, assesses Gorbachev's troop-reduction proposal and reflects on the role of the peacetime soldier

Few people listened more closely to Mikhail Gorbachev's announcement of a unilateral cut of 500,000 in the Soviet armed forces than the Chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff. On issues as disparate as the start negotiations and military involvement in the Persian Gulf, William Crowe (rhymes with how), 63, ultimately speaks for the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines as the President's top uniformed adviser. TIME senior correspondent Bruce van Voorst talked with him in his Pentagon office.

Q. What are the military consequences of Gorbachev's proposal?

A. If he makes good on his promise, I would consider it...

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