A SALT Safeguards Program

Coping with Soviet Deception Under Strategic Arms Agreements

by William R. Harris

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The author argues for a SALT Safeguards Program to complement the SALT II treaty. Such a SALT Safeguards Program would organize intelligence measures and vulnerability-reducing defense programs. Goals include: improving the reliability of "breakout" warning under conditions of peacetime deception, and improving the timeliness and utility of defense options should breakout occur. A legislatively mandated SALT Safeguards Program is proposed, in lieu of a defense budget increase that is not designed to minimize risks under SALT II. Peacetime deception is generally lawful, even under SALT II. An element of the Safeguards Program would include expanded counterintelligence jurisdiction for the "national technical means" of SALT verification that are as vulnerable as human sources to deception. Hypotheses regarding possible Soviet underrepresentation of ICBM missile accuracies and delays in protecting Minuteman survivability are presented, as illustration of the strategic deception problem in peacetime.

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