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The Winning Weapon: The Atomic Bomb in the Cold War, 1945-1950. By Gregg Herken. New York: AlfredA. Knopf, 1980. Pp. xi, 425. $15.00.

Gregg Herken's The Winning Weapon purports to be a detailed examination of the impact of the atomic bomb on the post-war world, particularly on American foreign and defense policy. The author aims to show the effect of the bomb on American domestic politics, on American strategic thinking, and, perhaps above all, on American policy toward the Soviet Union after World War II. Herken begins his discussion in September, 1945. He attempts to analyze the bomb's impact on American diplomacy and the interaction among scientists, politicians, and civil servants. A large part of the book addresses "the military dimension," the atomic bomb's influence on American strategic planning. He concludes his work with the explosion of the first Soviet atomic device and the end of the American monopoly of atomic weapons.

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