The Missile Gap was in essence a growing perception in the West, especially in the USA, that the Soviet Union was quickly developing an intercontinental range ballistic missile (ICBM) capability earlier, in greater numbers, and with far more capability than that of the United States. Even as that perception was disproved, it became evident that the Soviets were placing their major effort toward developing strategic missiles against which, once launched, there was no defense. The perceived missile gap that ensued was based on a comparison between U.S. ICBM strength as then programmed, and reasonable, although erroneous estimates of prospective Soviet ICBM strength that were generally accepted.

What is the main idea of this paragraph?

Despite erroneous thinking, the Soviet Union missile threat was still taken seriously.


The author is pointing to a gap in correct information while still maintaining that the Soviets were a threat. The other choices are incorrect because the Missile Gap had everything to do with misconceptions. Despite the gap, the threat remained. The United States and Soviet Union were comparing themselves to each other rather than working together.

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