The Star Wars Enigma PDF ePub eBook

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The Star Wars Enigma free pdf The year 1982 was a desperate time for the U.S. defense community. The United States had no effective system to protect itself completely from a Soviet attack with nuclear-armed intercontinental ballistic missiles, which the Soviet Union possessed in large quantity, and the doomsday philosophy of mutually assured destruction seemed inescapable. But people in the Reagan administration, including Reagan himself, were not content with what they viewed as a morally unacceptable status quo. Then Adm. James Watkins, a member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, asked, "Wouldn't it be better if we could develop a system that would protect, rather than avenge, our people?" With that, the president's commitment to the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI) became certain. Ultimately, SDI reflected Western political idealism, a powerful ingredient in the struggle to finally conquer the terrors of the Cold War and to allay the threat of nuclear holocaust. "The Star Wars Enigma" tells this dramatic story.From Chapter One, "Shooting Down Nukes" - These five men - James Abrahamson, Stanley Orman, George Shultz, Evgeny Velikhov, and Gerold Yonas - didn't know each other at the time, though Yonas and Velikhov had developed an acquaintanceship as a result of their attendance at international science meetings. Yet each, in his own way, was destined to play a role in the unfolding of Ronald Reagan's audacious Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI).Over the next few years, they would be caught up in cascades of debate over the presidential initiative - international intrigues, deceptions on both sides, student protests, Congressional arguments, Russian-American shouting matches, even assassinations carried out in Europe by the infamous Red Brigades.For the thousands who were involved closely with the Strategic Defense Initiative, this was an American affair. The assumption tended to hold true whether the protagonists considered it a political disgrace or an idealistic dream that would bring peace to the world. But they were wrong. This was no American monopoly. The Russians had been at it for years, in complete secrecy. Their program - actually a multiplicity of programs that employed tens of thousands of people - had been under way for more than two decades, at top-security sites all over the Soviet Union.What was SDI? The short answer describes a high-tech program to shoot down enemy missiles before they could reach U.S. targets. In fact it turned out to be an enormously complicated technical, psychological, and political construct. SDI had many layers of meaning, and its significance in ending the Cold War will forever be debated by statesmen and historians. Some have called it a hoax, a trick, a "sting." Others are true believers who hold that, even if SDI did not end the Soviet empire and the Cold War all by itself, it was one of numerous straws that broke the camel's back. Some think of it as an expensive mistake of kinds, encouraged by a military-industrial complex that managed to win the imagination of an aging President Ronald Reagan.Quite possibly it was all of these. Quite definitely it was an enigma, and to a large extent it remains so today.

About Nigel Hey

Nigel Hey was a science and technology writer and a senior administrator at Sandia National Laboratories until his retirement in 2001. His long career included writing four science books, contributing hundreds of articles to such publications as Smithsonian and the London Sunday Times, and working for United Press International. He lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Details Book

Author : Nigel Hey
Publisher : Potomac Books Inc
Data Published : 13 December 2007
ISBN : 1597970050
EAN : 9781597970051
Format Book : PDF, Epub, DOCx, TXT
Number of Pages : 288 pages
Age + : 15 years
Language : English
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    . The year 1982 was a desperate time for the U.S. defense community. The United States had no effective system to protect itself completely from a Soviet attack with nuclear-armed intercontinental bal