Future of Global denuclearization: Interview with Dr Andrew Futter

Academics, and students alike are all seeking to understand the route that nuclear development will undertake in the future- ‘Will proliferation accelerate? Who wants the bomb and why? How can the nuclear weapon states and non-nuclear weapon states prevent proliferation? Is the spread of nuclear weapons throughout the world inevitable?’

It is simply a case of uncertainty; ‘the future of nuclear proliferation is a political rather than strictly a technical question’– and I think it is safe to say that nothing is for certain when it concerns politics.    A leading academic who specialises in the field of nuclear proliferation has kindly given his insight regarding the future of nuclear non-proliferation.

Dr Andrew Futter is a senior lecturer in International Politics at the University of Leicester. His research is focused primarily with contemporary nuclear weapons issues and how emerging technologies impact nuclear strategy, stability and arms control. He has published widely on nuclear issues, including his books; ‘The Politics of Nuclear Weapons’ and ‘Ballistic Missile Defence and US National Security: Normalisation and Acceptance after the Cold War’, as well as a range of journal articles such as ‘Iranian nuclear aspirations and strategic balancing in the Middle East’.

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Who can or cannot own a nuclear warhead?

Under the Treaty on the Non – Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons nine member states are known to possess an inventory of warheads. Five of the nine states are bound to the treaty (North Korea estranged itself in 2003 and India, Pakistan and Israel are considered “Non-Signatory”) These states are as follows; the USA, the Russian Federation, United Kingdom, China, France, Israel, India, Pakistan and North Korea.

Ever since 1968, when the treaty was brought to international attention it has been open to signatures, with 1970 marking the year a signature was considered mandatory.

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North Korea, the United States and Nuclear Weapons: A Brief History

North Korea Nuclear RebootAs one of the world’s most secretive and isolated countries, the communist state of North Korea and its pursuit of nuclear weapons is both worrisome and fascinating in study. The entwined history of the North and the United States is vital in understanding why the rogue state has for so long sought a nuclear deterrent. So how did it all start?

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The Nuclear Deterrence Question.

Deterrence theory in terms of nuclear weaponry is the idea that nuclear weapons are intended to deter other states from attacking with their nuclear weapons through the promise of retaliation and possibly mutually assured destruction, however when this theory comes into practice, does it hold up?

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