Nuclear Diplomacy and the Special Relationship: Britain's Deterrent and America, 1957-1962

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The full inside story The full and fascinating inside story of Anglo-American nuclear relations from 1957 to 1962 is told for the first time in this book. This period saw the creation of a close and exclusive relationship of nuclear collaboration between Britain and the United States, with an agreement on atomic co-operation, the establishment of the facilities for US nuclear submarines in the UK, and the sale of US missiles, including Thor and Polaris for the British strategic submarine force. Revelations from formerly top secret documents Ian Clark's detailed analysis of newly declassified official documents reveals that, while special, the Anglo-American nuclear partnership was not without tension and rivalry. Prime Minister Harold Macmillan sought to combine interdependence-which reduced costs-with national policies on nuclear strategy, NATO, nuclear co-operation with France, and nuclear testing; the result was conflict with US administrations. Dr Clark examines such critical issues as British nuclear targeting of the Soviet Union and co-ordination with US nuclear war plans, cancellation of the Blue Streak missile, the bargain over Skybolt and the Holy Loch base, the diplomacy of the Skybolt crisis in 1962, and British ambitions for Polaris. The frank revelations contained in the formerly top secret British and American documents from the period enable him to offer fundamentally new and sometimes controversial interpretations of events in this dramatic period.