U.S. Strategic Nuclear Policy: A Video History, 1945-2004

Published on The National Security Archives, NSA Electronic Briefing Book No. 361, by William Burr, October 11, 2011.

  • Sandia Labs Historical Video Documents History of U.S. Strategic Nuclear Policy – Interviewees Include Robert McNamara, Brent Scowcroft, James Schlesinger and Last Strategic Air Commander-in-Chief Lee Butler.
  • Watch the short video clips in the right column.
  • Watch also the long video: US Strategic Nuclear Policy, Part 1, 59.48 minutes, reproduced with the permission of Sandia National Laboratories (Disk 1: 1945-1954: Chapters 1 through 9).
  • Includes Revelations on “Out of Control” Nuclear Targeting During the 1980s.
  • For more information contact William Burr, Tel (USA) 202/994-7000   

Twenty five years ago, when President Ronald Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev met at Reykjavik, Iceland on 11-12-October 1986, their far-reaching discussions involved proposals to abolish nuclear weapons by first moving toward a zero ballistic missiles option. Weighed down by mistrust and competing objectives, the discussions on ending the nuclear arms race collapsed. That Ronald Reagan supported nuclear abolition at Reykjavik is a lacuna in an otherwise informative and highly professional video documentary on the history of U.S. nuclear policy produced by Sandia National Laboratories obtained under the Freedom of Information Act and published today for the first time by the National Security Archive …
(full long texts).

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