The Military Dimension in the Making of Soviet Foreign and Defense Policy.

by Thomas W. Wolfe

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Discusses how military considerations enter into the making of Soviet foreign and security policy and how the substance of Soviet policy may be affected thereby. Reviews basic assumptions generally applied to analyzing the Soviet decisionmaking process and structure and operation of the decisionmaking bureaucracy, as well as the nature of Soviet civil-military relations, noting that there is a division of labor between political and military, with the political leadership tending to leave the professional details of security planning to the military and reserving to itself the right of final decision, especially on issues involving large resources of war and peace. The author concludes that growth and modernization of military power can be expected to continue and that the Soviets, while not indifferent to negotiated limits on arms programs, are unlikely to accept a SALT agreement that would call for dismantling substantial portions of the military machine they are still in the process of building. 44 pp. Ref.

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