Miss Grundy, the Brown ShirtnThe work of one of the liberal culture’sngurus, the late Mr. Roland Barthes,nresolves a number of perplexing politicolinguisticnconundrums. Said Barthes in anlecture at the College de France:nLanguage is fascistic because thensentences are based on subordination:nsubject, predicate, direct and indirectnobject.nThis, we presume, qualifies high schoolnstudents enrolled in grammar classes asnSoviets have continued research onnmissile defense systems, including thenuse of particle-beam technology. Fornthose truly concerned with the horrors ofnnuclear strikes, the potentials of antimissilensystems should be very appealing.nThat the peace movement finds suchnsystems alarming implies that it has anpriority higher than the protection ofnseveral million lives.nJJehind the debate on strategy is thenrealization—by both sides—that the oldndeterrence doctrine is dead. In truth, itnprobably never existed. The SovietnUnion never accepted the idea of an”mutual suicide pact,” nor did it havenany compelling logic of its own. Thenpeace was kept not by an arcane theorynbut by American military superiority.nThe ability of the U.S. to inflict devastationnon the U.S.S.R. without sufferingncomparable damage itself (which was thencondition of the balance of powernthrough the 1950’s and early 1960’s) wasna deterrent based on a war-fighting capability,neven if it was not characterized asnsuch at the time. It is the desire to preventnthe restoration of this Americannsuperiority that motivates the internationalnleft.nThis is the explanation for the timingnof the peace movement’s revival. Thenmovement showed no interest in thenS O ^ ^ H ^ H U H MnChronicles of CttlturenLIBERAL CULTUREnpolitical prisoners and certifies the use ofndangling modifiers as a heroic blow forndemocracy. CnSoviet development of first-strike weaponsnwhich started in the late 1960’s withnthe SS-9. It remained quiet throughoutnthe Soviet buildup of the 1970’s. Onlynwith the Reagan rearmament programndid it spring to life. And it is only againstnthe defense postures of the West that itnwill have any efiect. So far, the right hasnnot developed an adequate response.nThe Reagan response, consisting ofnthe START negotiations and the ZeronOption, is the wrong response. As NormannPodhoretz observed in regard tonVietnam, once the issue became hownbest to withdraw, the war was lost. Thensame principle still applies. If the issuenbecomes how best to disarm, the left wiUnset the agenda. Reagan will find himselfnvulnerable to the charge that he is notnmoving fast enough toward the goal ofnforce reductions, when he should benmoving in the opposite direction. Anynshort-term attempt to appease the peacenmovement will serve to undermine thenargument for a long-term commitmentnto rebuild the nation’s strength.nJJespite its faulty logic and dangerousnconclusions. Common Security cannstill be considered a serious book. Nonsuch claims can be made for CountdownnZero. Countdown Zero is a pure appealnto the emotions, and it’s not even verynpersuasive on that level. A brief quota­nnntion from Stewart Udall’s introductionnserves to illustrate the tenor of the book:n”This book is an indictment, an accusationnlodged against the rash scientists andnmacho military men who ignored commonsensenprecautions in their headlongnpursuit of military superiority.”nThe authors are two “atomic veterans,”nmen who took part in abovegroundnnuclear tests in the 1950’s. Thenpurpose of the tests was to determinenwhether soldiers could survive on a battlefieldnwhere tactical nuclear weaponsnwere being used. Given that the Sovietsnhave integrated nuclear weapons intontheir blitzkrieg doctrine and have consistentlynassumed that a major war innEurope would employ the full range ofnweapons, it was vital that the militaryndetermine their effects. In this, the testsnwere successful.nThough the reader is supposed tonrecoil in horror at the mention of nuclearntests, the fact is that the authors survivednmultiple battlefield exposures to nuclearndetonations. Saffer took part in thenHood test where a 77-kiloton device wasndetonated. A 77-kiloton warhead is fiventimes the size of the one dropped onnHiroshima. The current MIRV warheadnof a Minuteman III ICBM is 170 kilotons,nwhile that of the Poseidon submarine-launchednmissile is only 40 kilotons.nSaffer’s shelter was a five-and-one-halffoot-dcepntrench, less elaborate thannthose used in World War I. After thenblast, he and the other 2,300 men of hisnMarine brigade left the trench and advancedninto the blast area—which wasnonly three miles away. Reading Saffer’snaccount makes the Soviet plan for shelteringntheir population from attack seemnmore realistic.nThe authors use the book to draw attentionnto the alleged medical problemsnthat the soldiers have stififered since thentests, supposedly due to long-term radiationndamage. The validity of their claimsnis still under study, but one can sympathizenwith these men, as one would withnany veteran who was injured in the line ofnduty—and there have been many. Thatnwars cause death and destruction is hard-n