chapter  6
20 Pages

West Germany Faces Nuclear Modernization

WithRonald D. Asmus

The question of nuclear weapons on West German soil has become entwined with broader questions about the FRG's future role in Europe, its ties with the United States, and its relations with the East. When discussing the future of theater nuclear forces in West Germany, one must start by noting that the FRG is in the middle of a major debate on foreign and security policy, in which the question of nuclear modernization is a central issue. The nuclear modernization debate can only be comprehended against this changed political backdrop. It is more difficult to pin-point where and how post-Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces West Germany is different, and what ramifications this has for the debate on nuclear modernization. The Christian Democratic Union/Christian Social Union wants nuclear modernization not only to maintain die credibility of extended deterrence, but as a form of political reassurance for the Federal Republic from the United States at a time of renewed superpower detente.