The Soviet Union remains a superpower with global security interests and ambitions. The doctrines, practices and capabilities of its still formidable armed forces are shaping world politics just at the same time that the future of the country that created them is in doubt. This is the first book to analyze the unprecedented changes, as well as the troubling continuities, that characterize Soviet military thinking during the early 1990s. The authors, a group of leading analysts in the United States national security community, confront the range of Soviet military strengths, including intercontinental nuclear power, conventional ground and naval forces, and special operations. They address questions of Soviet weapons research and development, military planning and policy making, and the role of civilian critics on Soviet military objectives. Other chapters explore the Red Army's erosion in Eastern Europe as well as the lessons of Afghanistan.