In light of the dissolution of the Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War, some scholars argue that the use of extended-range weapons does not provide deterrence and invites unnecessary risks. In this article, the author contends that deploying only a small number of ICBMs will not erode US deterrence and that proposing a non-nuclear alternative of conventional ICBMs might boost, rather than erode, Russian confidence that a US nuclear strike is highly unlikely. Major topics addressed include The Fog of Deterrence, The Soviet Legacy, and The Context Today. Author concludes that by providing the United States with a nonnuclear option for prompt response at intercontinental ranges, these weapons would even increases Russian confidence that a nuclear strike by the United States against a target anywhere is the most improbable.
Aerospace Power Journal, Fall 2001, v. 15, no. 3