The Nuclear Predicament: Nuclear Weapons in the Twenty-First Century / Edition 3

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This interdisciplinary book examines the evolving nuclear predicament and considers particular strategies to cope with and shape the nuclear future. This book reflects the changes brought to nuclear issues by the end of the cold war. The Nuclear Predicament focuses on four main themes, allowing students to understand new nuclear situations—militarily, politically, socially, and ethically— as they arise. Appropriate for anyone with an interest in Nuclear Issues, American Foreign Policy, International Relations, Global Issues, and Contemporary History.
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Editorial Reviews

Four scholars from Hobart and William Smith Colleges declare that the first nuclear age ended in 1995, after half a century, and taught the lessons that nuclear weapons cannot be uninvented, that even small numbers can cause catastrophic damage that cannot be defended against, and that the existence of sovereign nation-states increases the likelihood that nuclear weapons will be used. They have revised their treatment in the 1989 and 1992 editions to address the second nuclear age by imagining the next 25 years with the recognition that the future is more complex and that the past is still the prologue to the future. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780136806387
  • Publisher: Pearson
  • Publication date: 10/25/1999
  • Edition description: 3RD
  • Edition number: 3
  • Pages: 340
  • Product dimensions: 6.03 (w) x 8.95 (h) x 0.66 (d)

Table of Contents

1. Hiroshima and the Nuclear Predicament.
Post Cold War Nuclear Risks. The Effects of Nuclear Weapons. Surviving a Major Nuclear War. The Nuclear Predicament. Summary. Notes.

2. The Decision to Use Nuclear Weapons.
Making Choices. Truman and His Advisors. Truman's Decision. The Debate about the Use of the Bomb. The Implications of Hiroshima and Nagasaki for the Future. Near Uses of Nuclear Weapons. The Cold War's Visions of Nuclear Use. Decisions to Use Nuclear Weapons in the Second Nuclear Era. The Likelihood of Nuclear Use in the Next Twenty-Five Years. Notes.

3. Building the Bomb.
The Early History of Atomic and Nuclear Physics. The Physics of the Nucleus. The Manhattan Project. The Fission Bomb. The Other Nuclear States. The Role of Nuclear Power Generation in Proliferation. The Hydrogen or Fusion Bomb. Summary. Notes.

4. The Roots of the Predicament: The Emergence of Total War.
The Search for Affordable Victory. The Environment for American Nuclear Decisions. Explanations of Nuclear Behavior. From Atomic Scarcity to Plenty. Nuclear Strategy Begins. Stalin and the American Monopoly. The Impact of the Soviet Bomb. The "Super." Doctrines for an Age of Plenty. The Soviet Experience. Nuclear Doctrine in Peacetime. Anticipating the End of Monopoly. Summary. Notes.

5. Survival in an Age of Nuclear Plenty.
Command and Control in the Nuclear Age. Maintaining the Ability to Retaliate. BallisticMissiles. Shaping the Nuclear Arsenals. The Triad Emerges. How Rugged Is Deterrence: Vulnerability and Deterrence in the Missile Age. The Balance of Terror. How Much Is Enough in a Balance of Terror? Strategic Doctrine Emerges. War Fighting and the Evolution of Soviet and American Doctrine. Critics of Flexible Response/War Waging. Technology's Impact on Doctrine. Defense against Missiles. The End of the First Nuclear Era. The New Nuclear Order. The Threat of Former Soviet Fissile Material. Summary. Notes.

6. Nuclear Rivals and Nuclear Relations.
The Nuclear Shadow. The Cuban Missile Crisis. The Lessons of the Cuban Missile Crisis. The Berlin Crises and Lessons. General Patterns of Nuclear Behavior. Nuclear Relations in a Cold War. The End of the Cold War and the Russian Future. The Five Crisis Points of the Nuclear Future. Summary. Notes.

7. The Expansion of the Nuclear World: Nuclear Proliferation and Terrorism.
The Politics of Nuclear Proliferation. How Dangerous is Nuclear Proliferation? Antiproliferation Policy. Nuclear Terrorism. Summary. Notes.

8. Controlling the Nuclear Future.
Controlling the Future. Arms Control in the Cold War. Arms Control Measures. Nuclear Rules of the Road. Other Mechanisms for Controlling the Nuclear Future. The Historic Cold War Revisited: Lessons for the Future. Rivalries in the Twenty-First Century. Summary. Notes.

9. Nuclear Weapons and Morality.
Morality and War. The Morality of Nuclear War. The Morality of Nuclear Deterrence. Nuclear Ethics after the Cold War. Summary. Notes.

10. Living in the Nuclear Age: The Social and Cultural Impact of Nuclear Weapons.
Nuclear Denial. The Domestication of Nuclear Language. The Psychological Impact of Nuclear Weapons. The Bomb and the Cultural Imagination. Death and Dying. Nuclearism. Nuclear Normality: Living with Nuclear Peace. Summary. Notes.

11. Solutions to the Nuclear Predicament.
Is There a Solution to the Nuclear Predicament? Technological Obviation. Minimum Deterrence. The Abolition of Nuclear Weapons. What Can an Individual Do? Notes.

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