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$180 Arms Buildup


President Reagan proposed the largest peacetime military build-up in US history, 180 billion dollar expansion over a six year period. The build-up included the B-1 bomber, the B-2 stealth bomber and an array of conventional weapons programs. Part of the build-up included the beginning of the Star Wars Defensive Missile program, which was highly controversial. Some believed that it would seriously destabilize the nuclear balance. Others felt that it would not be effective. Many analysts today, however, believe that the buildup convinced the Soviets that they would no longer be able to compete, especially in the area of smart munitions, and thus the Soviet military was willing to support Glasnost.