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Letter of Last Resort Radio Play

Radio 4 has broadcast a drama of "Letter of Last Resort" (iplayer). In the play a new Prime Minister discusses with her civil servant what she should write in the letter which is given to the Captain of each submarine, telling them whether or not to retaliate if Britain is destroyed in a nuclear attack. The adviser says - "without the irrational threat of retaliation there is no point having nuclear weapons at all". This is consistent with the Top Secret Duff Mason report (December 1978) which recognised that retaliation would be "an act of rage and revenge .... serving no rational purpose (page 5, page 6)

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