The Politics of Western Defense

The Politics of Western Defense

The Politics of Western Defense

The Politics of Western Defense

Excerpt

Today it is impossible to separate military from political considerations or defence from foreign policy. In writing this book my purpose has been to try and furnish enough detail of military hardware to make military problems clear to non-military people like myself and to try at the same time to relate them to the key political issues as I see them. It is thus an attempt to assess both the political and military aspects of the NATO alliance, on which I believe our defence and prospects of any real progress towards disarmament must alike depend.

NATO has been a success. But, like all alliances, it is only as strong as the collective will of its members, which means ultimately the will of its peoples. Thus NATO's continued success will depend increasingly upon how far there is an informed public opinion about its purpose and problems. In a democratic society it is impossible to get the support and financial provision necessary for a defence policy unless its objectives are understood and approved by the majority of the people. This book is intended as a contribution to the public discussion required to achieve this end.

Its origins lie in four reports on the state of European security which I presented between 1958 and 1960 to the Assembly of Western European Union, which offers in its Defence Committee a unique opportunity to Members of Parliament to undertake a study of defence problems with their colleagues from the other Parliaments represented. During my period of membership I was able to visit most of the Allied Headquarters in Europe and to discuss these problems with the military commanders and with most of the Defence and Foreign Ministers of Western European Union. As rapporteur I also had the advantage of a Visit to SACLANT and to the Strategic Air Command in the United States.

Since its beginning in 1956 the Assembly has been increasingly concerned with the need to reassess out defence policies in the . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.