On-Site Inspections Under the CFE Treaty

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On-Site Inspections Under the CFE Treaty

By Joseph P. Harahan and John C. Kuhn, III
On-Site Inspection Agency, 1996
369 pp.
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The chances that this dense work will become a best-seller are nil. It is, however, a thoroughly documented account of the considerable bureaucratic labors required to administer the complex Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe, concluded in 1990 just as the Cold War was evaporating -- and with it the rationale for the treaty. With great effort and ingenuity, American and European militaries have devised and operated a system for tracking deployments of weapons in Europe, a process that witnessed the removal of tens of thousands of pieces of Russian equipment to the east and the smashing, cutting, and crushing of much obsolete hardware on both sides. For those interested in the mechanics of conventional arms control, however, this will prove an interesting work, subject to the qualification that CFE monitoring took place under unusually favorable political conditions.