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The Case for the Nuclear Option

Posted 03-22-2022 at 03:12 PM by jbgusa

The Case for the Nuclear Option

The excellent analysis by Edward Luttwak in the August 1982 issue of Commentary Magazine (link), (which I will send a PDF copy of upon DM request) makes a case for a vital nuclear option in the Ukraine War (special military option) and indeed illustrates it. Ukraine is not a perfect country by any means but it is certainly better than Russia as controlled by Putin. Our response should be effective, and not limited to the "coordinated cries of anguish and nicely orchestrated hand-wringing" (original phrase by William Safire, a New York Times columnist (link to Safire article)

He wrote those words relating to similar Soviet aggression against Poland, now playing out in similar manner as the unprovoked attack by Putin against Ukraine. Conventional defense, as we have seen in Mariopol, is allowing atrocities. As Luttwak pointed out, “the European system of peaceful construction needs is a preclusive method of protection, not ultimate victory after much destruction and millions of deaths.” P. 14 of Luttwak article. As the article further points out “If NATO could not hold the front by non-nuclear combat, it would warn the Soviet Union that (small-yield) nuclear weapons would be used to strike at the invading Soviet forces. And then it would strike with such weapons if the warning went unheeded.”

With regard to actual casualties of such an approach “(t)he entire "software" of discipline, of morale, of unit cohesion and esprit de corps and all the practices and habits that sustain the authority of sergeants, officers, and political commissars, are simply not built to withstand such terror as nuclear weapons would cause-even if at the end of the day it were to be discovered that the dead on all sides were surprisingly few.

One of the reasons that opposition to nuclear methodology is almost entirely on the liberal side of the political spectrum is that the Soviet Union and now the Russians have stoked fear of full-scale nuclear winter. The Russians are, from a practical standpoint, the only logical aggressors. The West is the only logical user of defensive nuclear weapons. That is why I favor the “nuclear option” being alive and well. We do not need to fight this conflict to the last Ukrainian.
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  1. Old Comment
    I like the [B]nuclear [/B]options. We should have them on the table always.
    Posted 04-15-2022 at 05:22 AM by Squidlife Squidlife is offline

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