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A nuclear attack on the soviet union would have

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Unformatted text preview: stacle that each country faced was the threat of the other power. According to Mearsheimer’s theory, the Soviet Union, due to its proximity, would have attempted to extend its influence into the rest of Europe. Because of the weakened state of all other European nations at this time, there would have been little to stop them other than the United States in its role as an offshore balancer. It is my assumption, based on this theory, that without a nuclear deterrent, the Soviet Union would have eventually decided to extend influence over Europe. The United States would have intervened on behalf of its beleaguered capitalist allies, leading to an escalation of tactics that ultimately culminated in war. Because of the bomb, the Soviets were much more cautious with how they approached conflict, shying away from war. At this point, it is difficult to guess whether or not the U.S. would use the atomic bomb against the Soviet Union in the event of a war. The Soviet’s nuclear program would not have been accelerated without the bombings in Japan (while the Soviets knew that the U.S. was developing a nuclear program, the extent of their progress was unknown). This leads back to the primary point about fear: because nuclear deterrence had not been established, the United States would have used these nuclear weapons in order to demonstrate the power of the atomic bomb and instill the fear that comes with it. A nuclear attack on the Soviet Union would have prompted the development of nuclear weapons by the Soviets for retaliation, leading to a nuclear war. It is only because of the nuclear deterrence established by the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki that conflict between the United States and the Soviets did not openly commence, instead culminating in proxy ­wars. W...
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