The Parallax Brief


Unrepentant Subjectivity on Economics, Politics, Defence, Foreign Policy, and Russia

US Occupation of the USSR 1952-1960

The Parallax Brief loves counter-factual history — especially when it revolves around the what-ifs of a potential Warsaw Pact–NATO conflict. So much is he interested in NATO and Warsaw Pact military history that he was even willing to degrade himself by reading a Tom Clancy book, Red Storm Rising. (Never fear, it was a one off, and the Parallax Brief used protection). Imagine his glee, then, when via Matthew Yglesias’s mind-meltingly great blog, he found the pictured, October 1951 front cover of long deceased American Magazine, Collier’s.

Titled Preview of the War We Do Not Want, Collier’s devoted their whole 130 page October issue to how a war with the USSR might ignite and how the US – and its allies from the UN – would win that war. And it seems as if Collier’s took the whole thing very seriously, enlisting government help and even going so far as to tap Edward R Murrow, famous for his wartime broadcasts from London, to write an article titled A-Bomb Mission to Moscow, in which he is implanted into a B-36 bomber crew on a mission to nuke Moscow.

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Parallax Brief Savaged on Missile Defense

The Parallax Brief always hoped that his brazen subjectivity would incite some bare-knuckled debate, and his article on the US Anti-Ballistic-Missile shield seems to have done just that.

More Missile Shield Misunderstandings was forwarded by a reader to a former US Defense Department analyst, who has penned the following withering rebuke of the Parallax Brief’s argument. Although it was originally sent for approval for as a comment on the “About” page, the Parallax Brief believes it is too long for a comment, and well written and tightly argued enough for its own post. It is published in full and unedited. The author wishes to remain anonymous.

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More Missile Shield Misunderstandings

As a kind of appendix to the previous post regarding Charles Krauthammer’s woolly and often wantonly disingenuous Washington Post column on Obama’s missile shield stance, the Parallax Brief would like to explain just why Russia is concerned about the possibility of a US missile shield in Europe.

An argument the Parallax Brief often hears against Russia’s view of the missile shield as a threat is “what use are the ten interceptors against Russia’s thousands of missiles?” To a certain extent, that’s true: a few interceptor missiles as part of a US missile shield would be useless against a Russian first strike.

However, that’s not the issue. As far as the Parallax Brief can deduce, Russia is not concerned about its ability to perpetrate a first strike, but its ability to offer a credible deterrent against one.

To understand this, we need a better understanding of the various options available to the US and Russia in a potential nuclear war.
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