Retreat from Doomsday: The Obsolescence of Major War (Paperback)
by John Mueller
Updated 20th Aniversary Edition
Despite large stockpiles of deadly arms and some significant ideological differences, the developed world has been at peace for a longer continuous period than ever before. Arguing that this state of affairs is no accident, this book offers a detailed history of public policies and attitudes to war in modern times. The author sets out to show that, in spite of two 20th-century world wars, major war as a policy option among developed nations has gradually passed out of favour. He also contends that nuclear weapons have not had an important impact on this trend, neither making a crucial contribution to nor severely threatening post-war stability. Tracing the major Cold War crises - Korea, Cuba, Vietnam - the book concludes that, despite their revolutionary and expansionist ideology, former Soviet leaders never visualized major war as a sensible tactic. Only in the Third World does war remain endemic, and even here the author is cautiously optimistic that the developed world's aversion to war might prove infectious.
This product was added to our catalog on Wednesday 13 October, 2010.