Diplomats at official meetings, struggling to reduce military confrontation while they preserve the security of their countries, often feel inhibited in offering new ideas since their words are taken as representative of their government's position. On February 2-3, 1989, the Mosher Institute for Defense Studies of Texas A&M University conducted a privately funded symposium with two goals: to facilitate progress in official talks by providing an informal setting in which new concepts or proposals relating to European arms control could be discussed outside the rigid framework of intergovernmental negotiations, and to inform the public about the issues involved in arms control negotiations.
The timing of the symposium was auspicious: the Bush administration was reviewing arms control policies, recessed negotiations on confidence-building measures and chemical/biological warfare were about to resume, and new negotiations on conventional armed forces were about to start.
Meeting together for the first time were thirty senior representatives from each of the arms control negotiations, arms control policy makers, and other experts from thirteen nations of NATO, the Warsaw Treaty Organization, and neutral, non-aligned nations of Europe. Among them were the current chief negotiators in Vienna from the United States, Ambassadors John J. Maresca and Stephen J. Ledogar, and from the Soviet Union, Ambassador Oleg A. Grinevsky.
The symposium took place in five panels: the INF Treaty and its implications for military stability in Europe; the current military balance; and separate sessions on improving military stability through negotiations on conventional forces and armaments, chemical/biological warfare, and confidence- and security-building measures.
This volume contains the papers presented and transcripts of the discussions that followed. Viewed as a whole, these papers and discussions provide perhaps the best summary available of the variety of national views shaping policy across the broad spectrum of European arms control.
Dr. Ronald L. Hatchett is Deputy Director for Programs, Mosher Institute for Defense Studies, and former representative of the Secretary of Defense to the Mutual and Balanced Force Reduction Talks, the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe, the NATO High Level Task Force on Conventional Arms Control, and the Mandate Talks for Negotiations on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe.