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Synopsis

This volume provides the first comprehensive history of the arms racing phenomenon in modern international politics, drawing both on theoretical approaches and on the latest historical research. Written by an international team of specialists, it is divided into four sections: before 1914; the inter-war years; the Cold War; and extra-European and post-Cold War arms races. Twelve case studies examine land and naval armaments before the First World War; air, land, and naval competition during the 1920s and 1930s; and nuclear as well as conventional weapons since 1945. Armaments policies are placed within the context of technological development, international politics and diplomacy, and social politics and economics. An extended general introduction and conclusion and introductions to each section provide coherence between the specialized chapters and draw out wider implications for policymakers and for political scientists. Arms Races in International Politics addresses two key questions: what causes arms races, and what is the connection between arms races and the outbreak of wars?

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