Books: Arguments Against MADness

THE ABOLITION by Jonathan Schell; Knopf; 173 pages; $11.95

WEAPONS AND HOPE by Freeman Dyson; Harper & Row; 334 pages; $17.95

There are now approximately 50,000 nuclear weapons. They have brought the world to a state of critical mass: the detonation of one bomb or warhead could touch off a chain reaction leading to the extinction of the human race. For a fact of life—the existence of those weapons—to be so bound up with the possibility of the death of the planet is an affront to reason and conscience alike.

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