Tag Archives: Richard Betts

A Nuclear Reductio ad Absurdum

A government that is exposed to atomic threats in peacetime readily regards them as “blackmail” whereas the threatening power is likely to call them “deterrence.” Hans Spear in World Politics, April 1957. This quote opens Richard Betts’ 1987 book, Nuclear Blackmail and Nuclear Balance. While much has changed in the intervening years, most of the author’s fundamental conclusions are far too relevant today. Here are some of the choicest excerpts: Continue reading

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