National Defense Strategy

April 15, 1954

Report Outline
Reappraisal of Defense Program and Policy
Evolution of United States Defense Strategy
Parallel Reassessment of Allied Policy
Foreign Policy Applications of New Concepts
Special Focus

Reappraisal of Defense Program and Policy

The new concept of national defense strategy is coming up for further examination as Congress prepares to act on the military budget of the Eisenhower administration for the fiscal year 1955.

For several weeks in the wake of the Eniwetok-Bikini hydrogen bomb tests, with their disclosure of the devastating power of the newest nuclear weapons, members of Congress have been questioning earlier assumptions about Air Force levels, plans for continental defense, and the overall balance of forces in the military establishment. At the same time, some of the principal allies of the United States have been voicing their concern about the foreign policy counterpart of the so-called “new look” in defense—the doctrine of “massive retaliation” to deter aggression.

Demands for Clarification of the New Look

Requests for further clarification of American defense policies have come from several influential quarters in Congress. Sen. Symington (D., Mo.) opened one line of questioning on Mar. 30 when he criticised proposed budget limitations on the Air Force and demanded full information on the “broad aspects of military strategy.” Symington, who was Secretary of the Air Force in the Truman administration, said that neither he nor many of his colleagues understood important parts of the new look in military planning. Because “proper decisions cannot be made if the facts are not available”. Symington believed the lack of understanding endangered “the future security of the United States.”

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Weapons of Mass Destruction
Jul. 29, 2016  Modernizing the Nuclear Arsenal
Mar. 08, 2002  Weapons of Mass Destruction
Jan. 31, 1997  Chemical and Biological Weapons
Jun. 24, 1994  Nuclear Arms Cleanup
Jun. 05, 1992  Nuclear Proliferation
Jun. 29, 1990  Obstacles to Bio-Chemical Disarmament
Apr. 22, 1988  The Military Build-Down in the 1990s
May 24, 1987  Euromissile Negotiations
Jul. 11, 1986  Chemical Weapons
Apr. 27, 1984  Reagan's Defense Buildup
Jun. 04, 1982  Civil Defense
Jul. 17, 1981  Controlling Nuclear Proliferation
Jun. 05, 1981  MX Missile Decision
Aug. 15, 1980  The Neutron Bomb and European Defense
Sep. 07, 1979  Atomic Secrecy
Mar. 17, 1978  Nuclear Proliferation
May 27, 1977  Chemical-Biological Warfare
May 13, 1977  Politics of Strategic Arms Negotiations
Nov. 15, 1974  Nuclear Safeguards
Jul. 01, 1970  Nuclear Balance of Terror: 25 Years After Alamogordo
Jun. 18, 1969  Chemical–Biological Weaponry
Jun. 30, 1965  Atomic Proliferation
Mar. 21, 1962  Nuclear Testing Dilemmas
Aug. 16, 1961  Shelters and Survival
Oct. 12, 1959  Chemical-Biological Warfare
May 13, 1959  Nuclear Test Ban
Dec. 04, 1957  Scientific Cooperation and Atlantic Security
May 15, 1957  Changing Defense Concepts
Jul. 03, 1956  Civil Defense, 1956
Nov. 16, 1955  International Arms Deals
Oct. 04, 1954  Industrial Defense
Apr. 15, 1954  National Defense Strategy
Feb. 10, 1954  New Aproaches to Atomic Control
Oct. 10, 1953  Atomic Information
Apr. 11, 1952  Biological Warfare
Oct. 03, 1951  World Arms Race
Feb. 04, 1948  International Control of Atomic Energy
Dec. 06, 1946  International Inspection
Aug. 27, 1943  Gas Warfare
Jul. 24, 1937  The New Race in Armaments
May 05, 1932  Abolition of Aggressive Weapons
Defense Technology and Force Planning