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Re: Every incident is an opportunity

  • From: Barry Shein
  • Date: Mon Feb 12 17:23:08 2007

Of course, but the point was the goal of that targetting. The US
public by and large believed, and seems to still believe (i.e., the TV
show Jericho) that the goal of a USSR attack was purely vindictive,
complete annhilation. Apparently Civil Defense leaned more towards
invasion as a goal.

No doubt as weapons systems evolve how you achieve one goal or the
other evolves.

Either goal leads to different targeting strategies, as possible. If
your goal is invasion then value preservation is important (factories,
bridges, civilian infrastructure, etc.) If anniliation is the goal
than it's of no importance, just bomb the densest population centers.

On February 12, 2007 at 16:17 [email protected] (Steven M. Bellovin) wrote:
 > On Mon, 12 Feb 2007 15:05:45 -0500
 > Barry Shein <[email protected]> wrote:
 > > In the late 60s I remember having an interesting conversation with
 > > someone who did this kind of strategizing for the Dept of Civil
 > > Defense.
 > > 
 > > His scenarios were markedly diferent from the "urban folklore" you'd
 > > hear from people about what the Russkies were likely to nuke, other
 > > than everyone agreed they'd try to get the silos and a few other key
 > > military assets to try to prevent retaliation.
 > > 
 > Targeting strategy changed over time, because of changes in technology,
 > quantity of bombs available, accuracy, perceived threats, and internal
 > politics.  For a good history of US nuclear targeting strategy, see
 > "The Wizards of Armageddon", Fred Kaplan, 1983.  The short answer,
 > though, is that it changed markedly over time.  To give just one
 > example, at one time the US targeted cities, with very big bombs,
 > because the missiles of the day couldn't reliably hit anything
 > smaller.  Since that's what was possible, a strategic rationale evolved
 > to make that seem sensible.  
 > 		--Steve Bellovin,

        -Barry Shein

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