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Arms Control


The Doomsday Machine: Confessions of a Nuclear War Planner

The Doomsday Machine: Confessions of a Nuclear War Planner Lowest new price: $11.43
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Author: Daniel Ellsberg
Brand: BLOOMSBURY

Shortlisted for the 2018 Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Nonfiction
Finalist for The California Book Award in Nonfiction
The San Francisco Chronicle’s Best of 2017 List
In These Times “Best Books of 2017”
Huffington Post’s Ten Excellent December Books List
LitHub’s “Five Books Making News This Week”


From the legendary whistle-blower who revealed the Pentagon Papers, an eyewitness exposé of the dangers of America's Top Secret, seventy-year-long nuclear policy that continues to this day.

Here, for the first time, former high-level defense analyst Daniel Ellsberg reveals his shocking firsthand account of America's nuclear program in the 1960s. From the remotest air bases in the Pacific Command, where he discovered that the authority to initiate use of nuclear weapons was widely delegated, to the secret plans for general nuclear war under Eisenhower, which, if executed, would cause the near-extinction of humanity, Ellsberg shows that the legacy of this most dangerous arms buildup in the history of civilization--and its proposed renewal under the Trump administration--threatens our very survival. No other insider with high-level access has written so candidly of the nuclear strategy of the late Eisenhower and early Kennedy years, and nothing has fundamentally changed since that era.

Framed as a memoir--a chronicle of madness in which Ellsberg acknowledges participating--this gripping exposé reads like a thriller and offers feasible steps we can take to dismantle the existing "doomsday machine" and avoid nuclear catastrophe, returning Ellsberg to his role as whistle-blower. The Doomsday Machine is thus a real-life Dr. Strangelove story and an ultimately hopeful--and powerfully important--book about not just our country, but the future of the world.

An Amazon Best Book of December 2017: When Daniel Ellsberg was busy photocopying the Pentagon Papers—the set of classified documents that outlined the actual scope of the Vietnam War, the scale and illegality of which was unknown to the American public—he was also collecting information about the capabilities of the United States’ nuclear arsenal, in particular its philosophies and strategies regarding its use. Ellsberg, who worked in the highest levels of government crafting nuclear strategy before he became a whistleblower, lost those copies long ago, and for decades he held his knowledge close for fear of prosecution. But recent Freedom of Information Act disclosures have made him a little more comfortable in sharing his experience and information, and again, what he reveals that what we have been told— that these devastating weapons only existed as a method of deterrence—has never been true. Rather, the options of “first strike” or “first use” were, and are, always key components of American foreign strategy. That’s just from the introduction of The Doomsday Machine; what follows is an astonishing behind-the-scenes collection of detailed descriptions of global near-calamities, flawed launch protocols (both the U.S.’s military and our adversaries’), and the government’s own chilling estimates on the potential carnage following a nuclear conflict. At this moment especially, this book is terrifying. It’s also impossible to put down. --Jon Foro, Amazon Book Review

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The Spread of Nuclear Weapons: An Enduring Debate (Third Edition)

The Spread of Nuclear Weapons: An Enduring Debate (Third Edition) Lowest new price: $27.43
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Author: Scott Douglas Sagan
Brand: Brand: W. W. Norton Company

A long-time staple of International Relations courses, this new edition continues the important discussion of nuclear proliferation, while looking at the regions and issues now at the forefront of the nuclear question.

Over the past fifteen years, The Spread of Nuclear Weapons has been a staple in International Relations courses because of its brevity and crystal-clear explanations. The new edition, An Enduring Debate, continues the important discussion of nuclear proliferation and the dangers of a nuclear-armed world. With new chapters on the questions surrounding a nuclear North Korea, Iran, and Iraq and the potential for a world free of nuclear weapons, this Third Edition will continue to generate a lively classroom experience.

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Arms and Influence: With a New Preface and Afterword (The Henry L. Stimson Lectures Series)

Arms and Influence: With a New Preface and Afterword (The Henry L. Stimson Lectures Series) Lowest new price: $14.80
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Author: Thomas C. Schelling
Brand: Yale University Press

Traditionally, Americans have viewed war as an alternative to diplomacy, and military strategy as the science of victory.  Today, however, in our world of nuclear weapons, military power is not so much exercised  as threatened.  It is,
Mr. Schelling says, bargaining power, and the exploitation of this power, for good or evil, to preserve peace or to threaten war, is diplomacy—the diplomacy of violence.  The author concentrates in this book on the way in which military capabilities—real or imagined—are used, skillfully or clumsily, as bargaining power.  He sees the steps taken by the U.S. during the Berlin and Cuban crises as not merely preparations for engagement, but as signals to an enemy, with reports from the adversary's own military intelligence as our most important diplomatic communications.  Even the bombing of North Vietnam, Mr. Schelling points out, is as much coercive as tactical, aimed at decisions as much as bridges.  He carries forward the analysis so brilliantly begun in his earlier The Strategy of Conflict (1960) and Strategy and Arms Control (with Morton Halperin, 1961), and makes a significant contribution to the growing literature on modern war and diplomacy. Stimson Lectures.
Mr. Schelling is professor of economics at Harvard and acting director of Harvard's Center for International Affairs.
 
"An exemplary text on the interplay of national purpose and military force."—Book Week. "A grim but carefully reasoned and coldly analytical book. . . . One of the most frightening previews which this reviewer has ever seen of the roads that lie just ahead in warfare."—Los Angeles Times. "A brilliant and hardheaded book. It will frighten those who prefer not to dwell on the unthinkable and infuriate those who have taken refuge in the stereotypes and moral attitudinizing."—New York Times Book Review.

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The Human Rights Reader: Major Political Essays, Speeches and Documents From Ancient Times to the Present

The Human Rights Reader: Major Political Essays, Speeches and Documents From Ancient Times to the Present Lowest new price: $57.60
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Author: Micheline Ishay
Brand: Brand: Routledge

The second edition of The Human Rights Reader presents a dramatically revised organization and updated selections, including pieces on globalization and the war on terrorism. Each part of the Reader corresponds to five historical phases in the history of human rights and explores for each the arguments, debates, and issues of inclusiveness central to those eras. This edition is the most comprehensive and up-to-date collection of essays, speeches, and documents from historical and contemporary sources, all of which are now placed in context with Micheline Ishay’s substantial introduction to the reader as a whole and valuable introductions to each part and chapter.

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The Cold War: A World History

The Cold War: A World History Lowest new price: $26.67
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Author: Odd Arne Westad


The definitive history of the Cold War and its impact around the world


We tend to think of the Cold War as a bounded conflict: a clash of two superpowers, the United States and the Soviet Union, born out of the ashes of World War II and coming to a dramatic end with the collapse of the Soviet Union. But in this major new work, Bancroft Prize-winning scholar Odd Arne Westad argues that the Cold War must be understood as a global ideological confrontation, with early roots in the Industrial Revolution and ongoing repercussions around the world.

In The Cold War, Westad offers a new perspective on a century when great power rivalry and ideological battle transformed every corner of our globe. From Soweto to Hollywood, Hanoi, and Hamburg, young men and women felt they were fighting for the future of the world. The Cold War may have begun on the perimeters of Europe, but it had its deepest reverberations in Asia, Africa, and the Middle East, where nearly every community had to choose sides. And these choices continue to define economies and regimes across the world.

Today, many regions are plagued with environmental threats, social divides, and ethnic conflicts that stem from this era. Its ideologies influence China, Russia, and the United States; Iraq and Afghanistan have been destroyed by the faith in purely military solutions that emerged from the Cold War.

Stunning in its breadth and revelatory in its perspective, this book expands our understanding of the Cold War both geographically and chronologically, and offers an engaging new history of how today's world was created.


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One Minute to Midnight: Kennedy, Khrushchev, and Castro on the Brink of Nuclear War

One Minute to Midnight: Kennedy, Khrushchev, and Castro on the Brink of Nuclear War Lowest new price: $5.38
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Author: Michael Dobbs
Brand: Brand: Vintage

In October 1962, at the height of the Cold War, the United States and the Soviet Union came to the brink of nuclear conflict over the placement of Soviet missiles in Cuba. In this hour-by-hour chronicle of those tense days, veteran Washington Post reporter Michael Dobbs reveals just how close we came to Armageddon.

Here, for the first time, are gripping accounts of Khrushchev's plan to destroy the U.S. naval base at Guantánamo; the handling of Soviet nuclear warheads on Cuba; and the extraordinary story of a U-2 spy plane that got lost over Russia at the peak of the crisis.

Written like a thriller, One Minute to Midnight is an exhaustively researched account of what Arthur Schlesinger, Jr. called “the most dangerous moment in human history,” and the definitive book on the Cuban missile crisis.

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The Conscience of a Conservative

The Conscience of a Conservative Lowest new price: $0.55
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Author: Barry Goldwater

2011 Reprint of 1960 Edition. Full facsimile of the original edition, not reproduced with Optical Recognition Software. "The Conscience of a Conservative" was published by Goldwater when he was an Arizona Senator and a potential 1964 Republican presidential candidate. The book reignited the American conservative movement and made Barry Goldwater a political star. The book has influenced countless conservatives in the United States, helping to lay the foundation for the Reagan Revolution in 1980. The book is considered to be a significant statement of politically and economically American conservative ideas which were to gain influence during the following decades. The book continues to inspire contemporary political commentary.

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Above and Beyond: John F. Kennedy and America's Most Dangerous Cold War Spy Mission

Above and Beyond: John F. Kennedy and America's Most Dangerous Cold War Spy Mission Lowest new price: $15.00
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Author: Casey Sherman

From the authors of the bestselling The Finest Hours comes the riveting, deeply human story of President John F. Kennedy and two U-2 pilots, Rudy Anderson and Chuck Maultsby, who risked their lives to save America during the Cuban Missile Crisis


During the ominous two weeks of the Cold War's terrifying peak, two things saved humanity: the strategic wisdom of John F. Kennedy and the U-2 aerial spy program.

On October 27, 1962, Kennedy, strained from back pain, sleeplessness, and days of impossible tension, was briefed about a missing spy plane. Its pilot, Chuck Maultsby, was on a surveillance mission over the North Pole, but had become disoriented and steered his plane into Soviet airspace. If detected, its presence there could be considered an act of war.

As the president and his advisers wrestled with this information, more bad news came: another U-2 had gone missing, this one belonging to Rudy Anderson. His mission: to photograph missile sites over Cuba. For the president, any wrong move could turn the Cold War nuclear.

Above and Beyond is the intimate, gripping account of the lives of these three war heroes, brought together on a day that changed history.

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The Dead Hand: The Untold Story of the Cold War Arms Race and Its Dangerous Legacy

The Dead Hand: The Untold Story of the Cold War Arms Race and Its Dangerous Legacy Lowest new price: $8.56
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Author: David Hoffman
Brand: Anchor Books

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.

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Mao's China and the Cold War (The New Cold War History)

Mao's China and the Cold War (The New Cold War History) Lowest new price: $24.95
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Author: Jian Chen
Brand: Brand: The University of North Carolina Press

This comprehensive study of China's Cold War experience reveals the crucial role Beijing played in shaping the orientation of the global Cold War and the confrontation between the United States and the Soviet Union.

The success of China's Communist revolution in 1949 set the stage, Chen says. The Korean War, the Taiwan Strait crises, and the Vietnam War--all of which involved China as a central actor--represented the only major "hot" conflicts during the Cold War period, making East Asia the main battlefield of the Cold War, while creating conditions to prevent the two superpowers from engaging in a direct military showdown. Beijing's split with Moscow and rapprochement with Washington fundamentally transformed the international balance of power, argues Chen, eventually leading to the end of the Cold War with the collapse of the Soviet Empire and the decline of international communism.

Based on sources that include recently declassified Chinese documents, the book offers pathbreaking insights into the course and outcome of the Cold War.

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