The Short-Lived Struggle to Modernize NATO’s Short-Range Nuclear Forces - with Dr. Susan Colbourn

We will discuss Dr. Susan Colbourn's paper "The Short-Lived Struggle to Modernize NATO’s Short-Range Nuclear Forces".

Speaker: Dr. Susan Colbourn, International Security Studies, Yale University

Respondent: Dr. Andrea Chiampan, Security Studies Program, MIT

If you would like to participate in this online seminar, please register here. All participants will receive the paper and a Zoom invitation in advance.


The INF Treaty unleashed a new round of tense nuclear deliberations within the Atlantic Alliance, this time over short-range nuclear forces (SNF). Alarmed by the knock-on political, strategic, and psychological consequences of the ‘double zero’ solution, the Western allies struggled to develop a coherent policy regarding SNF and the modernization of these forces. This paper examines how and why SNF modernization was so controversial, in so doing, explores the transatlantic fallout of the INF Treaty. Ultimately, SNF modernization disappeared from the allied agenda in the wake of the transformations of 1989, but this interlude points to critical dimensions of the INF arms control process, often overlooked and forgotten in contemporary discussions of the INF process and its possible lessons for arms control going forward.


Speaker bio:

Susan Colbourn is a Henry Chauncey Jr. ’57 Postdoctoral Fellow at International Security Studies at Yale University. Her current book project, Euromissiles: A Transatlantic History, is a long history of the rise and fall of the continental arms race over intermediate-range nuclear forces.


Published May 8, 2020 2:23 PM - Last modified May 8, 2020 2:23 PM