Please join the Harriman Institute for a very special event, featuring Saltzman member Robert Jervis as discussant:

“Soviet Military Strategy in the Shadow of the Nuclear Revolution”

with David Holloway
Stanford University

and discussant Robert Jervis
Columbia University

 The first thermonuclear weapons tests (1952-1955) had a profound impact on the political leaders of the three nuclear powers of the time including the Soviet Union, leading them to view a general nuclear war as unacceptable in some profound if ill-defined sense. In this talk Holloway will make use of some newly available materials to examine the development of military strategy in the Soviet Union from 1953 up to the SALT agreements of 1972. What is the appropriate strategy for an unacceptable war? How did Soviet thinking about war change over this time? What shaped the development of Soviet military strategy? His paper draws on a larger project on the international history of nuclear weapons. He will therefore discuss Soviet military strategy in the context of the US-Soviet arms race and explore the impact of American policy and American ideas on Soviet thinking.

David Holloway is the Raymond A. Pruance Professor of International History at Stanford. His research focuses on the international history of nuclear weapons, on science and technology in the Soviet Union, and on the relationship between international history and international relations theory. He is the author of talin and the Bomb: The Soviet Union and Atomic Energy, 1939-1956 (Yale University Press, 1994) and The Soviet Union and the Arms Race (Yale University Press, 1983), and co-author of The Reagan Strategic Defense Initiative: Technical, Political and Arms Control Assessment (Ballinger, 1984). Dr. Holloway holds a Ph.D. in social and political sciences from Cambridge University.