This is the second of two articles exploring efforts at bridging the nuclear weapons gap between France and West Germany during the final decade of the Cold War. This gap existed in various ways: in the two countries’ respective international standing, with the relationship between Paris and Bonn complicated by France's possession of nuclear weapons; in their alliance choices, with their differing approaches to NATO military integration and strategy; and in their tactical nuclear military options (inseparable from conventional options), with the two countries fundamentally at odds over desirable procedures. The first article, published in the previous issue of the JCWS, explores the period from 1981 to 1986. This follow-on article covers the years 1986 to 1990. Although ultimately the dilemmas of nuclear sharing proved impossible to resolve, progress was made in the final years of the Cold War in narrowing differences between the two countries, whose bilateral relationship has been crucial for Europe and the West as a whole in the post–Cold War era.

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