After the death of FDR, President Truman had only weeks to learn about the Manhattan Project and, subsequently, cataclysmically ended WWII through the release of the Atomic Bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. These two profound events set the stage for a rise of nations who acquired nuclear weapons and threatened to use them in protection of national interests. More than 70 years later, the United States continues to maintain a nuclear strategy rooted in a mid-20th century world. With more states acquiring nuclear weapons and the growing potential for non-state actors to cross the threshold, nuclear deterrence strategy must be revisited. The US will need to respond to crises in a greatly expanded multi-polar world, weighing the cost of utilizing both nuclear and conventional options in an integrated strategy.
Next week, Mary Yelnicker will discuss how the US nuclear deterrence strategy must be revised to fit the nature of future conflicts. She explores both commonly accepted nuclear employment strategies and the US’s nuclear deterrence strategy by reviewing historical events and evaluating how all of it ties into today’s multi-polar world. Additionally, she will argue how the US must devise a strategy where nuclear and conventional forces fight and train side by side.