A Call for A Bold Defense: the Strategic Defense Initiative, aka “Star Wars”

An artist's concept of a Space Laser Satellite Defense System, 10/18/1984 ARC Identifier 6386997; Record Group 330: Records of the Office of the Secretary of DefenseA Call for a Bold Defense (3/23/83 10:30am draft), 03/23/1983 - 03/23/1983 ARC Identifier 198415 Item from Collection RR-SMOF: White House Staff and Office Collections, 01/20/1981 - 01/20/1989An artist's concept of a ground/space-based hybrid laser weapon, 10/18/1984 ARC Identifier 6389105; Record Group 330: Records of the Office of the Secretary of Defense

 

A Call for A Bold Defense: the Strategic Defense Initiative, aka “Star Wars”

Thirty years ago, on March 23, 1983,  President Ronald Reagan publicly revealed his Strategic Defense Initiative proposal in a televised address.  Portrayed as an alternative to the existing “Mutually Assured Destruction” (“MAD”) doctrine of nuclear deterrence, the ambitious nuclear missile defense system was also criticized as costly and implausible, derisively referred to as “Star Wars”.  The program greatly accelerated U.S. satellite research but led to one of the final escalations of the Cold War with the Soviet Union.

This draft of the speech incorporates edits and comments by President Reagan.

via DocsTeach

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