By Geoffrey Wiseman (auth.)

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42 The Soviet Union's main security concern was that Germany would use Finland as a staging-post to attack the USSR. In negotiations leading to the 1947 Paris Treaty, it was, ironically, the USSR that opposed limits on Finnish armed forces. Foreign Minister Molotov wanted a distinction made between larger and smaller belligerents. 43 Under the 1948 Finnish-Soviet Treaty of Friendship, Co-operation and Mutual Assistance, Finland was permitted decent armed forces, albeit along defensive lines. Also, Finland was allowed to keep its strong coastal fleet almost entirely intact after arguing that it was an important component of Finland's defence capability.

59 Soviet forces would make deep incursions into West Germany, with NATO making counter-strikes into East Germany. 60 Additionally, a defensively fought war against Soviet-led forces at or near the border would avoid West German territory being occupied or becoming a major battlefield, as NATO envisioned. Bonin implied that a war fought largely on West German soil provided a `shield' for the West but did little for the FRG. An especially important advantage of a purely defensive German force, Bonin suggested, was that `by its very structure [it] could not undertake offensive operations and .

In this shift in military doctrine away from defence towards deterrence, strategic stability, not inherent defensiveness, became the key criterion Historical Antecedents 37 in evaluating weapons and their deployments. 46 But while deterrence ideas took centre stage in both East and West, defensive ideas were not altogether absent. 47 Second, a defensive rationale is discernible in the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). Except to a handful of countries and theorists, any attempt by non-nuclear weapons states to develop a nuclear weapons capability was seen as signalling international assertiveness, if not offensive intent.

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