Contributor(s)RAND CORP SANTA MONICA CA
KeywordsAdministration and Management
Government and Political Science
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AbstractThis Note presents an analysis of possible actions, such as force movements and communications, the United States might take to deter the Soviet Union or other powers during a variety of crisis situations. The analysis examines contingencies and options by using a framework that identifies possible superpower roles and distinguishes among different stylized phases of crisis and conflict. This framework posits and develops three alternative superpower roles: (1) the 'True Believer'--an actor in a historic, ideological struggle between Soviet Marxism-Leninism and Western capitalistic liberal democracy; (2) the 'Competitor'--a pursuer of national interests in the framework of competing blocs and alliances organized around the great powers and subject to nuclear-era constraints; and (3) the 'Stabilizer'--seeking to maintain relative order and to contain risks. The analysis posits four phases in conflict scenarios: opening, posturing, engagement, and concluding. The analysis includes a consideration of the impact of Soviet deterrence actions on the United States and the impact of both U.S. and Soviet deterrence actions on other parties.