Work in progress:
This project examines the effects of a worst-case approach to threat assessment in the late-1970s and early-1980s.
Was this approach the most prudent basis in the enduring, existential cold war crisis? Can such an approach be characterised as paranoia? What were the costs to such an approach?
By analysing the Team B competitive intelligence exercise and the Committee on the Present Danger, this research explains how a Soviet invasion of Western Europe was seriously considered by influential American defense intellectuals. It argues that this paranoid style in threat assessment had significant costs to American national security: thinking the very worst of its adversary had the effect of escalating the cold war by the mid-1980s.
A working proposal document is available here. Feel free to comment directly in the document or get in touch via email.
Still Out in the Cold is a Cold War History website that pulls in relevant social media feeds, hosts a Cold War tourist map, and has links to some fantastic Cold War organisations.
The website is run by Nick Blackbourn