Strategy in the Second Nuclear Age

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256 pp., 6 x 9
ISBN: 9781589019287 (1589019288)

ISBN: 9781589019294

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October 2012
LC: 2012001503
Sales Rights: Not for sale in Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Afghanistan


Table of Contents

Strategy in the Second Nuclear Age
Power, Ambition, and the Ultimate Weapon
Toshi Yoshihara and James R. Holmes, Editors

A "second nuclear age" has begun in the post-Cold War world. Created by the expansion of nuclear arsenals and new proliferation in Asia, it has changed the familiar nuclear geometry of the Cold War. Increasing potency of nuclear arsenals in China, India, and Pakistan, the nuclear breakout in North Korea, and the potential for more states to cross the nuclear-weapons threshold from Iran to Japan suggest that the second nuclear age of many competing nuclear powers has the potential to be even less stable than the first.

Strategy in the Second Nuclear Age assembles a group of distinguished scholars to grapple with the matter of how the United States, its allies, and its friends must size up the strategies, doctrines, and force structures currently taking shape if they are to design responses that reinforce deterrence amid vastly more complex strategic circumstances. By focusing sharply on strategy—that is, on how states use doomsday weaponry for political gain—the book distinguishes itself from familiar net assessments emphasizing quantifiable factors like hardware, technical characteristics, and manpower. While the emphasis varies from chapter to chapter, contributors pay special heed to the logistical, technological, and social dimensions of strategy alongside the specifics of force structure and operations. They never lose sight of the human factor—the pivotal factor in diplomacy, strategy, and war.

Toshi Yoshihara is the John A. van Beuren Chair of Asia-Pacific Studies at the US Naval War College.

James R. Holmes is an associate professor of strategy at the US Naval War College and the author of Theodore Roosevelt and World Order. Yoshihara and Holmes are also coauthors of Red Star over the Pacific: China's Rise and the Challenge to US Maritime Strategy.

"Good books on strategy are hard to find. Good books on nuclear strategy are even harder to find as we celebrate the twentieth anniversary of the ending of the Cold War. The world, strategy, technology, and economic interdependence provide a profoundly changed and dynamic environment. This book fills a huge void and will be welcomed by both scholars and military strategists alike."—Gen. Eugene Habiger, US Air Force (Ret.), former Commander, US Strategic Command

"From time to time, though rarely, there is a book that can redefine the parameters of strategic understanding and debate. Strategy in the Second Nuclear Age is one such rare book. This very well edited collection of studies is, by quite a margin, the finest exploration and examination extant of the nuclear strategies of the newer nuclear-weapon states. I recommend it in the strongest terms."—Colin Gray, professor of international politics and strategic studies, University of Reading, UK

Table of Contents
1. Introduction
Toshi Yoshihara and James R. Holmes

2. After Proliferation: Deterrence Theory and Emerging Nuclear Powers
Joshua Rovner

3. South Africa's Nuclear Strategy: Deterring "Total Onslaught" and "Nuclear Blackmail" in Three Stages
Helen E. Purkitt and Stephen F. Burgess

4. The Future of Chinese Nuclear Policy and Strategy
Christopher T. Yeaw, Andrew S. Erickson, and Michael S. Chase

5. North Korea's Nuclear Weapons Program: Motivations, Strategy, and Doctrine
Terence Roehrig

6. Changing Perceptions of Extended Deterrence in Japan
James L. Schoff

7. Thinking About the Unthinkable: Tokyo's Nuclear Option
James R. Holmes and Toshi Yoshihara

8. The Influence of Bureaucratic Politics on India's Nuclear Strategy
Anupam Srivastava and Seema Gahlaut

9. The Future of India's Undersea Nuclear Deterrent
Andrew C. Winner

10. Pakistan's Nuclear Posture: Thinking about the Unthinkable?
Timothy D. Hoyt

11. Regime Type, Nuclear Reversals, and Nuclear Strategy: The Ambiguous Case of Iran
Scott A. Jones and James R. Holmes

12. Conclusion: Thinking About Strategy in the Second Nuclear Age
Toshi Yoshihara and James R. Holmes



Stephen F. Burgess Michael S. Chase Andrew S. Erickson Seema Gahlaut James R. Holmes Timothy D. Hoyt Scott Jones Helen Purkitt Terence Roehrig Joshua Rovner James L. Schoff Anupam Srivastava Andrew C. Winner Christopher Yeaw Toshi Yoshihara