Foreign Relations of the United States, 1977-1980, Volume XXVI, Arms Control and Nonproliferation

Foreign Relations of the United States, 1977-1980, Volume XXVI, Arms Control and Nonproliferation
Foreign Relations of the United States, 1977-1980, Volume XXVI, Arms Control and Nonproliferation
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This volume is part of a subseries of volumes of the Foreign Relations series (FRUS) that documents the most important issues in the foreign policy of the administration of Jimmy Carter. This volume documents U.S. arms control policy during the entire Carter administration, in six chapters: Anti-Satellite (ASAT) Weapons and Talks; Chemical and Biological Weapons (CBW) and the Sverdlovsk Incident; Comprehensive Test Ban (CTB) and Peaceful Nuclear Explosions (PNE); Conventional Arms Talks; Nuclear Non-Proliferation, Safeguards, and the International Nuclear Fuel Cycle Evaluation (INFCE); Nuclear Non-Proliferation in Latin America; and the Special Session on Disarmament (SSOD).
Arms control initiatives were at the top of Carter’s foreign policy agenda and much of the negotiations took place between the United States and the Soviet Union, China, and European allies.

The focus of this volume is on the arms control initiatives other than the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT) undertaken by the Carter administration. Each of the six chapters is presented in chronological order, and each documents the challenges Jimmy Carter faced in the latter period of détente. Carter and his national security team inherited a number of initiatives from the former President Gerald Ford administration, but in the first year of his administration, Carter focused on reorienting U.S. arms control policy. Carter wanted to reduce conventional arms sales and transfers to U.S. allies who did not place a high value on human rights.

Carter’s nuclear non-proliferation initiatives, including his concern that nuclear facilities and materials ostensibly meant for “peaceful” purposes could be diverted into weapons programs, worried U.S. allies, in particularly Japan, who wanted to decrease their dependence on oil imports by using nuclear energy. Carter also followed Mexico’s lead and spent much of his administration trying to convince Brazil, Argentina, and Cuba to sign and/or ratify the 1968 Treaty of Tlatelolco, which banned nuclear weapons throughout Latin America. After much pressure from its European allies and developing nations, the administration also devoted significant attention to the 1978 UN Special Session on Disarmament
The majority of communication and policy making was done at the U.S. Secretary of State (Cyrus Vance)/Foreign Minister or Ambassadorial levels. (MW add Primary source documents, such as) cables and memoranda of conversation thoroughly capture these interactions. Much of the correspondence was transmitted as cables through embassies, not through the hotline that had become popular under the (MW add former President Richard) Nixon administration. 
Historians, political scientists, international relations scholars, and national security specialists may be interested in this historical volume.  Additionally, high school through graduate students pursuing research for essays and thesis on the topics for both President James Carter administration, arms control, SALT and nonproliferation topics may prove valuable to have this historical position from President Carter’s administration.

Other related products:

Other volumes included in the Foreign Relations of the United States (FRUS) series can be found here:
Other US Federal publications relating to President James (Jimmy) Carter administration can be found here:
Arms and Weapons resources collection can be found here:

Foreign Relations historians and Educators


Foreign relations specialists, intelligence officials, and other national defense personnel would be interested in this publication. 

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State Dept., Bureau of Public Affairs, Office of the Historian
  • Tudda, Chris
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  • Arms Control
  • Nonproliferation
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