|Chapter title||British and International Peace Campaigning against the Strategic Defence Initiative|
The Strategic Defence Initiative was one of the most controversial policies in the NATO alliance in the 1980s: it deepened tensions between the United States and its West European partners and threatened to undermine the already difficult arms control/arms reduction talks between the United States and the Soviet Union. SDI generated widespread opposition in West European peace movements. But, at their peak when SDI was first proposed, these movements did not (with some small exceptions) make this opposition a priority. In the UK - the principal focus of this chapter - for a long time ‘Star Wars’ barely registered in the peace movement’s strategic debates and activism. When it did, the (very small) group European Nuclear Disarmament (END) mounted a strong anti-SDI campaign, along with even smaller groups founded specifically to oppose SDI; but the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND), the UK’s largest peace organisation, could only find SDI a secondary place in its new, post-cruise missile deployment activism. In the principal transnational forums of the West European peace movement, British and other peace organisations were unwilling or unable to maintain a focus on ‘Star Wars’.
|Book title||NATO and the Strategic Defence Initiative: a transatlantic history of the Star Wars programme|
|Published||19 Aug 2022|
|Published in print||2023|
|Place of publication||London and New York|
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI)||https://doi.org/10.4324/9781003104674-17|