NATO Nuclear Sharing and Troop Offset

Jonathan Colman

in The Foreign Policy of Lyndon B. Johnson

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print September 2010 | ISBN: 9780748640133
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748652693 | DOI:
NATO Nuclear Sharing and Troop Offset

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This chapter explores two challenges to NATO connected with the Federal Republic of Germany. One of the challenges was to give the FRG a greater say in the Alliance's nuclear affairs. This question found expression in the Multilateral Force (MLF), an ambitious American scheme for a nuclear-equipped NATO fleet operating under a US veto. The second issue is the question of the Bonn government's ‘offset’ of the foreign exchange costs for American troops in the FRG. The American troops issue was related to the nuclear question, because those troops were part of an implicit bargain to prevent, among other things, Bonn from pursuing nationalistic policies that might include seeking an independent nuclear capability. A series of ‘trilateral’ negotiations led to a satisfactory if short-term offset formula. President Johnson made a significant personal contribution to resolving both the MLF and the offset questions.

Keywords: NATO; Germany; FRG; nuclear affairs; Multilateral Force; Bonn government; President Johnson

Chapter.  9722 words. 

Subjects: US Politics

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