On Disarmament: The Role of Conventional Arms Control in National Security Strategy

By Ralph A. Hallenbeck; David E. Shaver et al. | Go to book overview
The current and previous SACEURs have said that NATO can only fight a conventional war "for days, not weeks," with current firepower and ammunition.5 Their rationale considers the overwhelming superiority of WTO numbers of offensive weapon systems and the 60-90 days of WTO ammunition that is stockpiled well forward on the potential battlefield, as well as the lack of modernization and fair share defense budget commitments of NATO partners to produce the numbers of systems and ammunition stockpiles necessary to counter a WTO offensive. Senator Nunn wanted to switch around days and weeks to be able to fight for "weeks, not days," and proposed a simple program to reverse the conventional weakness (logistical disarmament) in NATO:
Eliminate automatic escalators
increase NATO member ammunition stockpiles
build aircraft shelters and refuel/reloading capabilities
continue the Balanced Technology Initiative
Expand cooperative research and development.6

Such a program would have certainly improved our conventional deterrent, but the Soviet massive numbers and closing technology gap still raise concerns as to whether the NATO Alliance, with its very independent member-state convictions, can fight outnumbered and win, even with solid improvements in capabilities. In any case, logistical structural disarmament is an important factor in determining an alternative strategy, should reductions be kept at current CFE ceilings.

In summary, our discussion of structural disarmament takes on two different perspectives: technological and logistical. Both have dramatic impact on a future battlefield, and both are important to round out the total realm of disarmament and its role in national security strategy.


NOTES
1.
Edward N. Luttwak, "Why Arms Control Has Failed," in Military Strategy: Theory and Application, ed. by Colonel Arthur F. Lykke Jr., U.S. Army-Ret., Carlisle Pa. Barracks : U.S. Army War College, 1989, pp. 383-91, at p. 387.
2.
It should be noted that the arbitrary 50 percent figure may not actually represent the true size of the reductions that 50 Percent Club members have suggested. In a personal conversation with Ambassador Dean, Colonel Shaver asked what Ambassador Dean was looking for in his 50 percent proposal. The ambassador replied, "Something on the order of 25 percent. . . . The 50 percent figure was designed to encourage NATO to fall off its unrealistic 5-10 percent reduction figure." Ironically, President Bush's initial position in the now famous Kennebunkport meeting was also 25 percent reduction.
3.
Sam Nunn, U.S. Senator, Speech to the DMS Symposium on Industrial Cooperation within NATO, "NATO Challenges and Opportunities: A Three-Track Approach," Congressional Record, Washington, D.C.: April 28, 1987, Vol, 133, No. 66, pp. 4-5.

-76-

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On Disarmament: The Role of Conventional Arms Control in National Security Strategy
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Figures, Maps, and Tables ix
  • Foreword xi
  • 1- Background 1
  • Notes 15
  • 2- Objectives 19
  • Notes 37
  • 3- Procedures 39
  • From Issues to Policies: the Nato High Level Task Force 47
  • From Issues to Policies: the Nato High Level Task Force 50
  • 4- Issues 53
  • Notes 69
  • 5- Definitional Disarmament 71
  • Notes 76
  • 6- Current Cfe Negotiations 79
  • Notes 106
  • 7- Verification 109
  • 8- Current Csbm Negotiations 121
  • Notes 128
  • 9- Future Environment 129
  • Conclusion 138
  • Conclusion 139
  • 10- Alternative Defenses 143
  • Assessing Proposals for Deep Reductions And Defensive Restructuring Following Cfe 154
  • Assessing Proposals for Deep Reductions And Defensive Restructuring Following Cfe 164
  • 11- Risks, Results, and Reflections 167
  • Notes 182
  • Appendix A: Mandate for Negotiation On Conventional Armed Forces in Europe 183
  • Appendix B: Nato Chapter One 189
  • Appendix C: Nato Chapter Two 193
  • Appendix D: Nato Chapter Three 197
  • Appendix E: Western Csbm Proposal 205
  • Glossary 213
  • Bibliography 217
  • Index 223
  • About the Editors and Contributors 227
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