|Libellé||Emergence du concept de dissuasion nucléaire, publication du livre de Bernard Brodie The absolute weapon: Atomic Power and World Order|
|Synopsis||Ever since Hiroshima, thinkers have started one chain reaction after another about The Bomb. To clear away the hysteria, five of them published The Absolute Weapon (Harcourt Brace; $2) this week. The five (Bernard Brodie, Frederick Dunn, Arnold Wolfers, Percy Corbett, William Fox), all members of the Yale Institute of International Studies, have produced the best overall job yet on the atom's actual political implications. They make it more real by frankly presupposing that the only two powers likely to engage in an atomic-armament race are the U.S. and Russia.*|
Threat of Retaliation. Whether or not a world atomic agreement is reached, the authors round the globe. While some sciencetists think that an atomic-arms race is the most dreadful thing that could happen, The Absolute Weapon's text argues that it would be still more dreadful for only one nation to have bombs—for only then could they be used with impunity. In the atomic age the threat of retaliation is probably the strongest single means of determent.
Threat of Stalemate. In developing this theme The Absolute Weapon's text refutes the rather silly title. The atom can and will be fitted into military and political strategy, like all other weapons. A surprise atom-bomb attack could make Pearl Harbor look like a mere raid, but continental areas such as the U.S. and Russia are too great for immediate knock-out blows. A surprised but still surviving nation with atomic stockpiles could in its turn destroy the aggressor's cities and industries. After the first heavy devastation, both sides would have to fight minus most of their production; the war might well degenerate into a long stalemate with neither side able to launch a successful long-distance invasion.
More dangerous than the atom itself is the idea that a quick atomic blitz would defeat any great nation. No possible atomic aggressor would be able to think that if other great nations are automatically prepared. In mutual atomic war, even the victor will suffer destruction incomparably greater than that suffered by any defeated nation in history. . . . Under those circumstances no victory, even if guaranteed in advance—which it never is—would be worth the price.
Read more: http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,793035,00.html#ixzz1HJlsGwCN