Britain, the United States and the Command of Western Nuclear Forces, 1945-1964
Planning Armageddon provides the first detailed account of Britain's Command, Control, Intelligence and Communications infrastructure. A central theme of the book is the British-American atomic relationship and its implications for NATO strategy. Based on the recollections of officials and military officers in both Britain and the United States and employing recently declassified government documents, Planning Armageddon presents a systematic analysis of British involvement in nuclear planning from Hiroshima to the development of Polaris. At the same time, it provides an important examination of the operational weaknesses of the British nuclear deterrent and the potential hazards presented by unwarranted secrecy.
(This book) is both a fascinating and frightening history of how many good and able people struggled with exceptional risk and the most demanding and highly complex intellectual and practical issues to prevent Armageddon. How close was it?
'At long last Twigge and Scott have taken a major step towards meeting the requirement for a comprehensive history and analysis of British nuclear weapons operations in the Cold War era...Using rigorous scholarship, access to recently released documents, and interviews with some of those involved in the key decisions, Twigge and Scott have put together a richly textured and detailed study of Britain's early attempts to manage and operate its nuclear weapons.'