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Soviet Union Table of Contents

Soviet Union

ARMS CONTROL AND MILITARY OBJECTIVES

Since the late l960s, the Soviet Union has made arms control an important component of its foreign and military policy. Soviet public diplomacy liberally used arms control and disarmament slogans. Arms control proposals and signed agreements, however, have been carefully coordinated with doctrinal requirements and weapons programs.

Soviet objectives in all areas of arms control--strategic, space, intermediate-range nuclear, and conventional weapons--have been, first, to help avert a world war, and, second, to prevent the erosion of Soviet capability for fighting such a war. If efforts to avert war were to fail, Soviet leaders required that their armed forces be able to fulfill military missions and win all military conflicts. War was to be avoided by entering into agreements that would limit an adversary's weapons and forestall the adversary's development of a war-winning military posture. Capability for fighting and winning a war was to be continued by acquiring the necessary arsenal within the constraints of an agreement and by maintaining it against all odds.

Data as of May 1989