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WINNER OF THE PULITZER PRIZE The first full account of how the Cold War arms race finally came to a close, this riveting narrative history sheds new light on the people who struggled to end this era of massive overkill, and examines the legacy of the nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons that remain a threat today. Drawing on memoirs, interviews in both Russia and the US, and classified documents from deep inside the Kremlin, David E. Hoffman examines the inner motives and secret decisions of each side and details the deadly stockpiles that remained unsecured as the Soviet Union collapsed. This is the fascinating story of how Reagan, Gorbachev, and a previously unheralded collection of scientists, soldiers, diplomats, and spies changed the course of history. From the Trade Paperback edition.
A history of the end of the arms race describes the Soviet Union's development of an automatic retaliatory attack system, the United States's efforts to create space-based missile defenses, and the struggle to prevent nuclear weapons from being acquired by terrorists.
WINNER OF THE PHI BETA KAPPA AWARD IN SCIENCE The story behind the stunning, extreme weapons we see in the animal world--teeth and horns and claws--and what they can tell us about the way humans develop and use arms and other weapons In Animal Weapons, Doug Emlen takes us outside the lab and deep into the forests and jungles where he's been studying animal weapons in nature for years, to explain the processes behind the most intriguing and curious examples of extreme animal weapons—fish with mouths larger than their bodies and bugs whose heads are so packed with muscle they don't have room for eyes. As singular and strange as some of the weapons we encounter on these pages are, we learn that similar factors set their evolution in motion. Emlen uses these patterns to draw parallels to the way we humans develop and employ our own weapons, and have since battle began. He looks at everything from our armor and camouflage to the evolution of the rifle and the structures human populations have built across different regions and eras to protect their homes and communities. With stunning black and white drawings and gorgeous color illustrations of these concepts at work, Animal Weapons brings us the complete story of how weapons reach their most outsized, dramatic potential, and what the results we witness in the animal world can tell us about our own relationship with weapons of all kinds.
Reagan’s Legacy in a World Transformed offers a timely retrospective on the fortieth president’s policies and impact on today’s world, from the influence of free market ideas on economic globalization, to the role of an assertive military in U.S. foreign policy, to reduction of nuclear arsenals in the interest of stability.
Following the bombings of Nagasaki and Hiroshima, the twentieth century was haunted by the specter of nuclear annihilation. Locked in a hostile embrace, the U.S. and the USSR engaged in a ruinous arms race preparing for the kind of war no one wanted and no one could win. Though the Cold War ended, the dangers of nuclear proliferation remain, with poorly secured nuclear weapons and materials vulnerable to theft, sale, accident, or misuse. The many debates over the years surrounding the arms race, proliferation, deterrence, and security are collected here to provide readers with a fine-grained sense of the international tensions, political urgency, diplomatic strategies, and global fears that have long underlined the effort to build and maintain nuclear arsenals.
In The Triumph of Improvisation, James Graham Wilson takes a long view of the end of the Cold War, from the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in December 1979 to Operation Desert Storm in January 1991. Drawing on deep archival research and recently declassified papers, Wilson argues that adaptation, improvisation, and engagement by individuals in positions of power ended the specter of a nuclear holocaust. Amid ambivalence and uncertainty, Mikhail Gorbachev, Ronald Reagan, George Shultz, George H. W. Bush, and a host of other actors engaged with adversaries and adapted to a rapidly changing international environment and information age in which global capitalism recovered as command economies failed. Eschewing the notion of a coherent grand strategy to end the Cold War, Wilson paints a vivid portrait of how leaders made choices; some made poor choices while others reacted prudently, imaginatively, and courageously to events they did not foresee. A book about the burdens of responsibility, the obstacles of domestic politics, and the human qualities of leadership, The Triumph of Improvisation concludes with a chapter describing how George H. W. Bush oversaw the construction of a new configuration of power after the fall of the Berlin Wall, one that resolved the fundamental components of the Cold War on Washington's terms.
Through a variety of policies and actions--and most recently in a new military doctrine adopted in February 2010--Russia has indicated the types of situations and threats that might cause it to resort to using nuclear weapons. This volume examines Russia's evolving framework for nuclear deterrence and its implications for U.S. military operations in Europe.

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