Facing the Bear

Scotland and the Cold War

Trevor Royle

Date Published :
October 2019
Publisher :
Illustration :
16pp color and b/w plates
Format Available    QuantityPrice
ISBN : 9781780275260
Pages : 368
Dimensions : 9.45 X 6.7 inches
In stock


Between the end of the Second World War and the collapse of Communism confrontation with the Soviet Union was an everyday reality. As part of Nato’s response, Scotland played a key role in the alliance’s forward maritime defence strategy, aimed at containing the Soviet threat from naval and air forces. During this period 10 per cent of the UK’s naval and air forces were based in Scotland, and there was a substantial US presence as well as top secret satellite and command stations.

In this book Trevor Royle paints a fascinating portrait of this extraordinary period, examining not just the wider military and political contexts, but also showing how the defence industry brought huge economic benefits, how CND maintained a high-profile presence, and how anti-nuclear sentiments underpinned much of the left’s thinking in Scotland and contributed to the hegemony enjoyed by the Labour Party in Scotland during the Cold War.

About The Author

Trevor Royle is a broadcaster and author specialising in the history of war and empire. His most recent books include Patton: Old Blood and Guts and Civil War: The Wars of the Three Kingdoms 1638-1660. He is an associate editor of the Sunday Herald and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh.


"Engrossing... this is not simply a story of military hardware and confrontation. Royle is very interesting on how the Cold War influenced our cultural life from the novel to poetry and the protest song."

- The Herald

"An interesting look back at the Cold War era in Scotland."

- The Washington Times

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