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A Commentary On Deterrence


Has the possession of nuclear arsenals worked to prevent
regional and global war?

"That is the wrong question. The right question is: 'Do the people in power in the nuclear nations believe that the possession of nuclear arsenals "worked" to prevent regional and global war?' The answer is yes they do and will act accordingly. In my view the effort to change their belief is futile. A more practical course is balanced nuclear disarmament with the reason for nuclear deterrence (in their view) eliminated when the nuclear weapons are eliminated." --- Edward Perry


"We should not use nuclear weapons because they are useless. In George Kennan's 1981 Proposal for International Disarmament he concluded, "To my mind the nuclear bomb is the most useless weapon ever invented. It can be employed to no rational purpose. It is not even an effective defense against itself. It is only something with which, in the moment of petulance or panic, you commit such fearful acts of destruction as no sane person would ever wish to have upon his conscience." --- Edward Perry