During the Cold War, the United States and the former Soviet Union relied on nuclear deterrence to navigate successfully through those perilous years. In today's world, with the accelerating spread of nuclear material, know--how, and weapons, we are facing an increasing danger that nuclear weapons, the deadliest weapons ever invented, may be acquired by ruthless national leaders or suicidal terrorists. Under these circumstances, relying on thousands of nuclear weapons for deterrence is becoming increasingly hazardous and decreasingly effective.
What will it take to rekindle the vision of a world free of nuclear weapons that President Reagan and General Secretary Gorbachev brought to their remarkable summit at Reykjavik in 1986? Can a world-wide consensus be forged on a series of practical steps to escape the nuclear deterrence trap?