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Nukes in the ’58 Straits Crisis


Hans Kristensen highlights some new information that has come to light on plans to use nuclear weapons to defend Quemoy from Chinese invasion in 1958:

Some of the veil covering U.S. nuclear war planning against China in the 1958 Taiwan Strait crisis now has been lifted by a declassified military study.

It shows that on the day after the Chinese began shelling the Quemoy islands on August 23, 1958, U.S. Air Force Headquarters apparently assured Pacific Air Forces “that, assuming presidential approval, any Communist assault upon the offshore islands would trigger immediate nuclear retaliation.” Yet President Dwight D. Eisenhower fortunately rejected the use of nuclear weapons immediately, even if China invaded the islands, and emphasized that under no circumstances would these weapons be used without his approval.

Read the rest;c the longer post discusses planning for nuclear utilization against China through the 60s and again in the 1990s.

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