[FoRK] beware inevitability! a foil to the technologicalsingularity?

Russell Turpin deafbox
Fri Oct 14 15:26:17 PDT 2005


Kevin Elliott <k-elliott at wiu.edu>:
>If I were the USSR in the 1970's I'd have signed
>ANYTHING that would reduce the number of US nukes. If I can get the number 
>to 0 or close enough for a first strike then BOOM, I win.  The USSR's 
>military quantity SO exceeded the US at this point that any war looked 
>incredibly one side
>from the Soviet perspective. ..

In the late 1970s, when I was in graduate school,
my roommate was a historian who spent some
time studying nuclear strike issues. I read more
than ever I wanted about CEPs, overpressures,
and the relative capacities of the US's and USSR's
strategic arsenals.

What you write is nonsense. The USSR had
more warheads. About that, you're correct. The
US had more accurate, more reliable, and better
protected missiles. Even the most successful
Soviet first-strike against the US would have led
to a counterstrike that would have destroyed
USSR's infrastructure, and killed the majority of
its population. MAD in action. BTW, the reason
the USSR had more warheads is that that is
the cheaper way to create a plausible nuclear
deterrent.

>Moreover the "inferiority" of the US approach was being vividly 
>demonstrated by Vietnam.

Say what?! Other than both being aspects of
the Cold War, I'm at a loss as to what the
domino theory and the Vietnam war have to
do with strategic arsenals and nuclear stand-
off.




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