Article ID: CBB001212162

Armageddon's Shortening Fuse: How Advances in Nuclear Weapons Technology Pushed Strategists to Mutually Assured Destruction, 1945--1962 (2013)


The article discusses how the development of nuclear weapons technology in the early years of the Cold War led U.S. and Soviet foreign policy and military strategists' to embrace and plan around the concept of mutually assured destruction (MAD). The author begins by explaining the complications of air delivery of atomic bombs in the late 1940s along with Soviet bomb testing. He goes on to explain advances in American ballistic missile development, which caused conflict with the U.S. Air Force's Strategic Air Command (SAC) fleet of long-range bomber planes. U.S. President John F. Kennedy's support for ballistic missile strategy is explained. The author concludes that these missiles eventually acted as deterrents for nuclear war between the U.S. and the Soviet Union.

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Authors & Contributors
Gordin, Michael D.
Vizgin, Vladimir P.
Goodman, Michael S.
Hargittai, István
Schwartz, Norton A.
Spinardi, Graham
Air Power History
VIET: Voprosy Istorii Estestvoznaniia i Tekhniki
History and Technology
Journal of Contemporary History
Cold War History
Metascience: An International Review Journal for the History, Philosophy and Social Studies of Science
Cornell University Press
Stanford University Press
Farrar, Straus & Giroux
Prometheus Books
University of Minnesota Press
The MIT Press
Nuclear weapons; atomic weapons
Cold War
Technology and war; technology and the military
Technology and politics
Military technology
Science and war; science and the military
Truman, Harry S.
Stalin, Joseph
Teller, Edward
Nixon, Richard M.
Krushchev, Nikita
Eisenhower, Dwight David
Time Periods
20th century, late
20th century
21st century
United States
Soviet Union
Great Britain
United States Air Force
North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO)

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