For that reason, they would be suspicious, after the signing of the intermediate nuclear forces treaty, of any further steps toward the elimination of nuclear weapons in Europe. Fear of nuclear war, according to this view, has prevented nuclear war, and it would be foolhardy to eliminate that fear entirely.
On this issue, the divisions within Europe are clear: Britain and France do not want [Reagan] and [Mikhail S. Gorbachev] to start negotiations toward elimination of short-range nuclear weapons. But West Germany, the probable battleground in any war fought with nuclear artillery, appears ready to discuss their eventual elimination.
The specter of the October, 1986, summit meeting in Reykjavik, Iceland, makes some Europeans fret. As many Europeans see that last summit, an ill-prepared Reagan, without consulting his European allies, almost swallowed whole the proposals of Gorbachev. Disaster was averted, in the European view, only because Reagan stubbornly refused to give up his Strategic Defense Initiative, or "Star Wars" project.