Case #884.0

SS-9 Controversy: Intelligence as Political Football

Publication Date: January 01, 1989
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When Secretary of Defense Melvin Laird shocks the Senate Foreign Relations Committee with the view that a new Soviet missile will provide the USSR with a "first-strike" nuclear capability, the Central Intelligence Agency finds it must consider the nature of its relationship to the executive branch of government. Long aware of the SS-9 missile but unconvinced it would prove to be a first-strike weapon, the CIA must consider how to make its case without undermining a larger Nixon administration arms control political strategy. A celebrated press leak ups the ante.

Other Details

Case Author:
Kirsten Lundberg
Faculty Lead:
Ernest May and Greg Treverton
Pages (incl. exhibits):
United States