What influenced Britain's nuclear policy 1945-1990

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What influenced Britain's nuclear policy 1945-1990?

World power status:

  • Britain develops H bomb to keep up with superpowers USA and USSR.
  • Britain had lost her empire but felt it could be substituted for nuclear weapons as a display of strength.
  • Britain reduced spending on conventional weapons and increased spending on nuclear weapons as they created an image of power.

Public opinion:

  • Emergence of CND and Aldermaston in 1950's - some argue that this encouraged the government to persue a policy of détente.
  • Women's peace camp (Greenham Common) raised awareness and pressured government.
  • Early 1980's Labour change policy to anti-nuclear weapons but proved unpopular and Thatcher


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