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Volume 6, Issue 1.
As the US continues discussions with the Soviet Union on limiting or reducing theater nuclear forces in Europe, a variety of political and military issues have arisen concerning nuclear forces in the region. At the center of the debate are the Soviet deployment of the SS-20 missile and NATO's 1979 decision to modernize its theater nuclear force. In ... read morethis article, Jeff McCausland examines the major factor that influenced NATO's decision to deploy the new missiles - and seeks to determine Soviet aims by analyzing contemporary Soviet military doctrine and the capabilities of the SS-20 missile. Building on this analysis, he discusses the missile's potential as a military, and political weapon, its proposed targets, and its place in the future of arms control negotiations. McCausland concludes that closer examination of Soviet intentions, actions and capabilities can clarify the issues facing the West.