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Mutually assured destruction or mutual assured destruction

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  • Mutually assured destruction and mutual assured destruction are phrases that were first used in the 1960s. We will examine the definitions of the phrases mutually assured destruction and mutual assured destruction, where these terms came from and some examples of their use in sentences.

    Mutually assured destruction and mutual assured destruction are terms for a doctrine of national security. Mutually assured destruction is a doctrine that depends on two or more countries possessing the means to annhialate each other with nuclear weapons. The belief is that none of these countries will be the aggressor and attack the other countries first, because each of these countries has the ability to destroy the attacking country. First world nations that have nuclear capabilities can detect missiles carrying nuclear warheads before they hit their targets. This doctrine was first developed by John Von Neumann, a mathematician who worked on the Manhatten Project, which developed the first nuclear bomb. The terms mutually assured destruction and mutual assured destruction were first used in the 1960s.

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    Examples

    At the time I retired we decided that for the good of all mankind, including those that did not agree with our policies or political stance, that MAD (Mutually Assured Destruction) was the logical approach to prevent a nuclear war, not provoke one. (The Des Moines Register)

    Ketchikan residents above a certain age can recall the dawn of atomic weaponry, the first nuclear arms race and learning to live under the cloud of potential mutually assured destruction. (The Ketchikan Daily News)

    The 1960s military game theorists who devised the doctrine of nuclear deterrence or “Mutual Assured Destruction” – such as Hermann Kahn, who is also satirised in Dr Strangelove – lived in a different era from ours. (The Scotland Herald)

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