The postwar security framework that has kept the peace for 35 years depends on nuclear weapons. The United States and its allies are heavily reliant on nuclear weapons for their security, more so than their adversaries. This means that the U.S. approach to nuclear arms control must be one of caution. It does not mean that progress is not possible, but it will be hard slogging because of the differences between U.S. and Soviet interests. In this discussion, which was a speech made at a meeting of the New Frontiers and Futures Section of Town Hall of California, the author details his thesis by looking at the following points: the structure of peace; the role of defense establishments; the role of nuclear weapons; the extended deterrence problem; nuclear force needs; conventional force needs; and the future of nuclear arms control.
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.
Permission is given to duplicate this electronic document for personal use only, as long as it is unaltered and complete. Copies may not be duplicated for commercial purposes. Unauthorized posting of RAND PDFs to a non-RAND Web site is prohibited. RAND PDFs are protected under copyright law. For information on reprint and linking permissions, please visit the RAND Permissions page.
The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.