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The ABM Treaty: To Defend or Not to Defend?

Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN 0-19-829123-X
219 pp.

This book examines the issues in the current debate on the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty, a matter of considerable significance for East–West relations and international security. The 13 authors have been selected from the international community for their expertise in the field.

In the introduction the three editors from SIPRI highlight the complexities of the issues involved and identify possible solutions. Ambassadors Gerard Smith and Vladimir Semenov, the two negotiators of the 1972 Treaty, give their views on what they believe they were negotiating, and subsequent papers address the significance of the current US and Soviet interpretations of the Treaty for such issues as space-based defences. The 'grey areas' in the Treaty are highlighted, and the much neglected implications for the international community in general and the small nuclear powers and alliances in particular are presented.


Part I. Introduction

The challenge to the ABM Treaty

Walther Stützle, Bhupendra Jasani and Regina Cowen


Part II. Background to the current debate

1. A historical perspective

John W. Finney

2. The Treaty's basic provisions: View of the US negotiator

Gerard C. Smith

3. The Treaty's basic provisions: View of the Soviet negotiator

Vladimir Semenov


Part III. Current US and Soviet ballistic missile defence programmes

4. Soviet research and development of directed-energy weapons

Simon Kassel

5. Technologies of ballistic missile defence

Thomas H. Johnson


Part IV. ABM Treaty issues—US and Soviet views on the Treaty and compliance questions

6. Issues related to current US and Soviet views of the Treaty: A Soviet jurist's perspective

Vladen S. Vereshchetin

7. The ABM Treaty: Verification and compliance issues

Richard N. Haass


Part V. The international dimension

8. Ballistic missile defences into the next century—implications for the United Kingdom's strategic deterrent forces

Ronald Mason

9. The implications for France

Dominique Moïsi

10. Tactical missile defence

Hubert M. Feigl

11. Impact on the two German states and their alliances

Elizabeth Pond

12. 'For the benefit and in the interest of all': Superpower space programmes and the interest of third states

Donald Hafner


The ABM Treaty


Dr Walther Stützle was the Director of SIPRI from 1986 to 1991.