Escalation and Nuclear Option
Bernard Brodie


This work stresses the importance, in making any choice of strategies-including the decision to use or refrain from using nuclear weapons-of gauging the intent behind the opponent's military moves. Dr. Brodie also suggests that the use or threat of use of tactical nuclear weapons may lead to de-escalation, that is, may check rather than promote the expansion of hostilities. The author applies his ideas about escalation to several imagined situations, examining them in relation to experiences in Europe, in the second Cuba crisis, and in Asia.

First published in 1966.

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