In This Review

Strengthening Conventional Deterrence in Europe: Proposals for the 1980s
Strengthening Conventional Deterrence in Europe: Proposals for the 1980s
By The European Security Study
St. Martin's, 1983, 260 pp.

This study, organized by the late Carroll Wilson, brought together a group of eminent European and American specialists and military officers to ask what could be done to reduce reliance on the early use of nuclear weapons in NATO strategy. Cautiously, the study does not advocate abandoning either the strategy of Flexible Response or the doctrine of Forward Defense. But it does conclude that the effectiveness of conventional defense forces could be substantially improved through new advanced technologies for target acquisition and various "high tech," non-nuclear capabilities which would make it possible to suppress Warsaw Pact air forces and interdict at rear-echelon choke points. The authors believe that this could be done for about $20 billion over a ten-year period and with a level of expenditure only one percent higher than the current NATO goal of three percent annual growth in defense spending. The thoroughness of the study, authority of the participants, and the balanced character of the conclusions have made this a major contribution to the thinking on this problem.