Strategic Impasse: Offense, Defense, and Deterrence Theory and Practice

By Stephen J. Cimbala | Go to book overview

Introduction

Nuclear weapons are useful, but nuclear war is not. This is the fundamental contradiction from which the nuclear impasse springs. Weapons of unprecedented destructiveness, with the potential under the wrong conditions to destroy civilization, are thereby extremely useful in preventing war. Nor is the preventive role imaginary. Europe now knows an extended period of peace, or at least absence of armed conflict, which must be laid at the door of the nuclear arsenals available to the superpowers, among others. He who would change the balance of power in Europe must first find a way around the balance of terror. Worse for the person who would change the status quo, the balance of terror is basically dyadic. A multipolar system would at least have the virtue of flexibility; a bipolar system does not. Although the U.S. and Soviet relationships with their respective allies are now more sensitive to national differences than in the past, the superpower sovereignty in the capability for nuclear first strike and retaliation is still unique.

This condition of superpower nuclear sovereignty shared across a divided East-West political glacis creates ironical outcomes below the nuclear threshold. The impetus for improvement in capabilities to wage conventional war was increased. These improved capabilities for conventional war fighting would be useful if the war could be contained below the nuclear threshold. To that extent they would contribute deterrence by denial. However, the nuclear components of a future battlefield in Europe could not be isolated completely from the conventional. Even if not used, nuclear weapons would hang over the battlefield like unwelcome evil spirits. The issue whether either the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) or the Warsaw Pact could

-xi-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Strategic Impasse: Offense, Defense, and Deterrence Theory and Practice
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 267

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    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.