In This Review

Counsels of War
Counsels of War
By Gregg F. Herken
Knopf, 1985, 409 pp.

Since 1945 the nature of nuclear war has, providentially, only been imagined, not demonstrated. Thus, planners and theoreticians-a new profession dedicated to "thinking about the unthinkable"-have replaced fighting soldiers as the shapers of American strategy. This fine book traces the swirling theories of deterrence, war-fighting capacity, limited war and the nature of the Soviet Union from 1945 to the present. It relates ideas to the specific personalities who advanced them-Bernard Brodie, William Borden, Robert Oppenheimer, Albert Wohlstetter and many others.