In This Review

Beyond the Cold War: A New Approach to the Arms Race and Nuclear Annihilation
Beyond the Cold War: A New Approach to the Arms Race and Nuclear Annihilation
By E. P. Thompson
Pantheon, 1982, 196 pp

The collected essays of one of Europe's leading advocates of nuclear disarmament make for intriguing yet ultimately depressing reading. A social historian, E. P. Thompson for the past several years has been at the barricades of the anti-nuclear, anti-defense debate in the United Kingdom. He has found receptive audiences in continental Europe and America. His satirical blasts at Ronald Reagan, the defense intellectuals and deterrence theory are witty and crowd-pleasing. Yet set side-by-side in this volume, they are surprisingly shallow, unanalytical, often ill-informed and full of ad hominem attacks. A typical remark: "What is needed is less 'arms control' than control of the political and military leaders who deploy these arms."