SSBN survivability: a time for confidence-building measures?.
Hayes, James A.
Daniel, Donald C.
Yost, David S.
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Historical and technological imperatives have led both the United States and the Soviet Union to array their strategic nuclear forces in triads of air, land, and sea launched ballistic missiles. This thesis will focus on the sea-based legs of the American and Soviet triads, examining a series of confidence -building measures (CBMs) that may be considered during the Strategic Arms Reduction Talks (START) that are underway in Geneva. Some proponents have argued that these CBMs, if implemented, would strengthen each side's belief in the invulnerability of nuclear-powered, ballistic missile launching submarines (SSBNs) , thereby increasing strategic stability. These proposals seek to increase confidence in SSBN survivability by managing both the employment of anti-submarine warfare (ASW) forces and the development of technology that could be specifically directed against SSBNs. This thesis will consider the possible effects that five different CBMs could have on U.S. perceptions of SSBN survivability. These changes in perception will be measured against the costs that might be exacted in other areas (e.g., tactical anti-submarine warfare) by agreeing to the CBMs.
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