The political potential of equivalence: the view from Moscow and Europe

by Benjamin S. Lambeth

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Explores Soviet perceptions regarding the political significance of the parity relationship that has come to characterize the East-West strategic confrontation and the opportunities which attainment of equivalence may imply for future Soviet action. The paper describes Soviet approaches toward weighing the strategic balance (which differ fundamentally from most currently fashionable Western indexes), examines possible Soviet views on the adequacy of current Soviet forces for a variety of political and military tasks, and concludes with a brief overview of how our NATO allies perceive their own security requirements, imperatives, and options to have been affected by the shifts that have occurred in the Soviet-American relationship during the past decade.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation Paper series. The paper was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1948 to 2003 that captured speeches, memorials, and derivative research, usually prepared on authors' own time and meant to be the scholarly or scientific contribution of individual authors to their professional fields. Papers were less formal than reports and did not require rigorous peer review.

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