Thinking About Nuclear Weapons : Principles, Problems, Prospects: Principles, Problems, Prospects

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Oxford University Press, Feb 12, 2009 - History - 224 pages
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The book reflects the author's experience across more than forty years in assessing and forming policy about nuclear weapons, mostly at senior levels close to the centre both of British governmental decision-making and of NATO's development of plans and deployments, with much interaction also with comparable levels of United States activity in the Pentagon and the State department. Part I of the book seeks to distill, from this exceptional background of practical experience, basic conceptual ways of understanding the revolution brought about by nuclear weapons. It also surveys NATO's progressive development of thinking about nuclear deterrence, and then discusses the deep moral dilemmas posed - for all possible standpoints - by the existence of such weapons. Part II considers the risks and costs of nuclear-weapon possession, including proliferation dangers, and looks at both successful and unsuccessful ideas about how to manage them. Part III illustrates specific issues by reviewing the history and current policies of one long-established possessor, the United Kingdom, and two more recent ones, India and Pakistan. Part IV turns to the future, examines the goal of eventually abolishing all nuclear armouries, and then discusses the practical agenda, short of such a goal, which governments can usefully tackle in reducing the risks of proliferation and other dangers while not surrendering prematurely the war-prevention benefits which nuclear weapons have brought since 1945. This book is a project of the Oxford Leverhulme Programme on the Changing Character of War.

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Michael Quinlan entered the UK Home Civil Service in 1954. He was Private Secretary to the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Air 1956-58, and to the Chief of the Air Staff 1962-65. From 1968 to 1970 he was one of the Directors of Defence Policy in the Ministry of Defence and from 1970 to 1973 Defence Counsellor in the UK Delegation to NATO in Brussels. After a spell in the Cabinet Office he returned to the Ministry of Defence as Deputy Under-Secretary of State from 1977 to 1981. After service as a Deputy Secretary in the Treasury and then as Permanent Secretary in the Department of Employment he returned to the Ministry of Defence as Permanent Under-Secretary of State from 1988 to 1992. From 1992 to 1999 he was Director of the Ditchley Foundation, which runs a wide-ranging and high-level programme of international conferences. In 2007 he co-authored with General Lord Guthrie a short book on the Just War tradition for Bloomsbury. He wrote this book regarding his deep concerns about development of anti-ballistic missiles and nuclear proliferation and he also believes that we should think seriously that highly desirable goals of nuclear disarmament might not be approached in near future.
Michael Quinlan momentarily explains the significance of nuclear weapons and mark that their importance is raised with the revolution in development and attention to avert the aims of the enemy through a potential use against it, as it was history of catastrophic and devastating result due to the dropping of nuclear bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki during the second world war.
The message from the thinking about the Nuclear weapons must be constantly on the alert. There is a hard little evidence about the political, strategic and military upshot of their use, and data on their use in only confined to the Second World War. The thinking about the nuclear weapons should be visibly and realistically as the strength of the human allow us. The language or terms of art about the nuclear weapons can carry risks to understanding that what the writer explains.
As the Roman formulated ‘if you want peace, make ready fro war’. According the writer, Deterrence arises from basic and permanent facts about conduct. Mostly discussion has tended to focused entirely of immense reality of Nuclear weapons, but it must be supposed that preventing their use is the sole purpose of deterrence. Partly on that account, military deterrence cannot separate only means of nuclear weapons. Their uses can scarely be credible and their deterrent power, Therefore scarley effective against hostility.
Michel Quinlan illustrates that nuclear weapons are for preclusion and never to be uses. Deterrence is a concept for operating upon the thinking of the others. He inscribe about the NATO Nuclear deterrence and planning to build an alliance’s strategic concept of flexible response to any belligerence. Furthermore, NATO thinking about was always clear that a major conflict not to be conducted in a sealed compartment. A significant number of people in the NATO have stand of concern that the Nuclear weapons ever for possession for deterrence could never be morally unobjectionable.
Michael Quinlan consultation about the moral accountability that is an integral part of what it means to be human, and so aspect of human affairs can claims omission from it. The moral accountability of possessing nuclear weapons in contested at both these levels within this framework, these positions are possible on morally is first always renounce the possession of nuclear weapons. Secondly, the possession should always to prevent war and lastly is to provide effective deterrence in extreme position; these are morally justified and tolerable. In short, the difficult realities of the world, the possession of nuclear armories cannot reasonably be dismissed as always intorable in ethical terms. But these remain a grave moral duty, both to take seriously as a long term vision.
The managing of nuclear weapons involves the risks of insecurity, escalation, any accident of detonation of nuclear


Part I The Significance of Nuclear Weapons
Part II Managing Nuclear Weapons
Britain India Pakistan
Part IV The Path Ahead
Nuclear Weapons and Preventing War
The Strategic Use of Nuclear Weapons

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