be placed on a truly stable basis. Sincenthe West cannot let its vital oil suppliesnfall into the hands of the Soviets, ornKhomeini, or Qaddafi-style fanatics,nit is not impossible that outright militarynoccupation—even a form of colonialnrule—may someday be required. Thisnprospect, however distasteful, shouldnhave been examined.nJL hough sensible enough in describingnour present crisis, Nixon is not veryngood at explaining how it arose, and henis confusing—often disingenuous —nwhen he explains the disastrous role ofnhis own administration in creating thisnmess. He is frank enough to admit thatnagreements with the Soviets were oversold,nto put it mildly. He now regretsnthe termination of the draft and hisntrade policies toward the Soviet Union.nBut he still dangerously fogs the issuenby continuing to maintain that henachieved something called “detente.”nThe truth of the matter is that the agreementsnthat allegedly created Nixon’sn”detente,” viewed in the most favorablenlight, were far less important than thenagreements of the first post-Stalinn”thaw” of the 1950’s—and we knownhow feeble, short-lived and deceptiventhose agreements were. Though Nixonnnow emphasizes that detente involvednonly a limited understanding primarilynaimed at avoiding nuclear war, and thatnhe did not view it as a replacement fornthe containment policy or the end ofnthe Cold War, he certainly failed tonmake this clear at the time. His currentnview of the strategic balance is anbit hard to reconcile with his Secretarynof State’s famous complaint that strategicnsuperiority was meaningless. Thenrole of his administration in allowingnthe Soviets to overtake us becomes morenthan a little blurred. Nixon stresses thatn”SALT I itself did not freeze us into anninferior position.” It is certainly truenthat SALT I did not have this result allnby itself. But a few pages later, Nixonnhimself barely and vaguely alludes tonthe superior “throw weight” given thenSoviets by SALT, and he admits thatnthe Soviets “exploited loopholes in thenSALT I agreement contrary to ournunderstanding.” Some would not hesitatento call it a sleight-of-hand ratiocination.niNlixon’s examination of the disastersnin Southeast Asia is, to be blunt.nagreement,” the North Vietnamese retainednintact “sanctuaries” in Laosnand Cambodia which completely outflankednthe South Vietnamese, and theynmaintained an army of at least 150,000nmen inside the prewar borders of SouthnVietnam. Though the Vietcong in thensouth were defeated, and a stable, if notn”. . . a tompi’mlium ot honor storic.-i aluuil in.satiaMc t