1963 Australian Study on UK and Nuclear Weapons

This 1963 Australian Dept of External Affairs Policy Planning Study, titled An Examination of the Nature and Extent of Current British Economic Interests and Political and Military Commitments in South and South East Asia, their likely course over the next Ten Years, and the Implications for Australia has some interesting bits about the nuclear weapons in British foreign and defense policy. Here’s a good example:

To sum up, priority for the homeland and Europe, increasing dependence on the U.S. and the N.A.T.O. alliance, anti-nuclear sentiment in Africa and Asia, the likely contraction of bases, the decline in her relative economic and trading position, the need to reduce foreign expenditure, and continuing manpower shortages in the forces, are all factors limiting Britain’s ability to maintain an effective military presence east of Suez. She has sought to make the best of limited resources and adverse circumstances by a strategy of long-range mobile forces operating from a central reserve in the U.K. and, to date, a major theatre base in Singapore. The conventional role of those forces outside Europe is essentially that of fire brigades for small brush-fire wars; where, in fulfilment of her regional alliance commitments, it may become necessary to oppose Chinese Communist aggression, Britain would expect nuclear weapons to be used. British strategy in the Far East, therefore, is essentially one with a limited application which is likely to contract. The responsibility for the military containment of Communism in Asia is basically and increasingly one for the U.S. and the countries of the region.

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