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Five Myths About Nuclear Weapons

By Ward Wilson

An explosive rethinking of the power and purpose of nuclear weapons — and a call for radical action

Nuclear weapons have always been a serious but seemingly insoluble problem: while they’re obviously dangerous, they are also, apparently, necessary. This groundbreaking study shows why five central arguments promoting nuclear weapons are, in essence, myths. It is a myth:

• that nuclear weapons necessarily shock and awe opponents, including Japan at the end of World War II
• that nuclear deterrence is reliable in a crisis
• that destruction wins wars
• that the bomb has kept the peace for sixty-five years
• and that we can’t put the nuclear genie back in the bottle

Drawing on new information and the latest historical research, Wilson poses a fundamental challenge to the myths on which nuclear weapons policy is currently built. Using pragmatic arguments and an unemotional, clear-eyed insistence on the truth, he arrives at a surprising conclusion: nuclear weapons are enormously dangerous, but don’t appear to be terribly useful. In that case, he asks, why would we want to keep them?

This book will be widely read and discussed by everyone who cares about war, peace, foreign policy, and security in the twenty-first century.




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Publish Date




Format: Book
Author: Wilson, Ward
Title: Five myths about nuclear weapons / Ward Wilson.
Publisher Date: Boston : Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013.
Subject: Nuclear weapons -- Psychological aspects. Nuclear warfare Strategy
Isbn: 9780547857879 054785787X
Current Holds: 0
System Items Available: 0
System Items Total: 1
Call Number: U264 .W59 2013
Oclc: 772099674
Bib Id: 416381

Format: Book
Author: Wilson, Ward.
Title: Five myths about nuclear weapons / Ward Wilson.
Publisher, Date: Boston : Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2013.
Subjects: Nuclear weapons -- Psychological aspects.
Subjects: Nuclear warfare
Subjects: Strategy
Contents: Myth: Nuclear weapons shock and awe opponents -- Myth: H-bomb quantum leap -- Myth: Nuclear deterrence works in a crisis -- Myth: Nuclear weapons keep us safe -- Myth: There is no alternative.
LCCN: 2012017322
ISBN: 9780547857879
ISBN: 054785787X
Requests: 0
Available Copies: 0
Total Copies: 1
Call Number: U264 .W59 2013