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The Cold War and AfterHistory, Theory, and the Logic of International Politics$
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Marc Trachtenberg

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780691152028

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691152028.001.0001

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The Making of the Western Defense System: France, the United States, and MC 48

The Making of the Western Defense System: France, the United States, and MC 48

(p.142) Chapter Five The Making of the Western Defense System: France, the United States, and MC 48
The Cold War and After

Marc Trachtenberg

Princeton University Press

This chapter focuses on a document formally adopted by the NATO Council in December 1954, called MC 48, a report by the Alliance's Military Committee on “The Most Effective Pattern of NATO Military Strength for the Next Few Years.” In approving this document, the Council authorized the military authorities of the Alliance to “plan and make preparations on the assumption that atomic and thermonuclear weapons will be used in defense from the outset.” One very important consequence of the new strategy from the European point of view had to do with what was called “nuclear sharing”—that is, with the provision of American nuclear weapons to the NATO allies. This policy of nuclear sharing was one of the key elements in the history of this period.

Keywords:   NATO, international relations, defense policy, MC 48, nuclear weapons, nuclear sharing policy

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