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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Francis J. Gavin article review.

This post will review an article written by Francis J. Gavin on Nuclear proliferation and non-proliferation during the Cold War, making it one of the most relevant articles to this blog. F. Gavin received a masters and a Ph.D. in diplomatic history, and is now the first Frank Stanton Chair in Nuclear Policy studies and a professor in Political sciences at MIT. Nuclear strategy and arms control is one of his main interests and area of study. Showing how qualified and trusted his writing is and how relevant the article is. Continue reading “Francis J. Gavin article review.”

NATO and Nuclear Sharing

 

nato-logoThe concept of the US, with such an impressive nuclear arsenal, sharing its nuclear weapons with non-nuclear states seems to completely defy the original aims of the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT). Is it perhaps alarming then, that a significant international military alliance with twenty-eight members, two of which are nuclear weapon states, subscribes to such a theory?

The United States has had a nuclear presence in Europe since the 1950’s. In spite of this, several ideas were proposed in the 1960’s to develop a separate NATO nuclear force that could be shared amongst non-nuclear states. These however, never came to fruition, as non-nuclear NATO members were happy to rely on the security of the United States’ weapons to ensure their nuclear deterrence was maintained.

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STATE KEY FIGURES

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FOR EACH STATE MENTIONED, THE DIAGRAM SHOWS THE ESTIMATED NUMBER OF; NUCLEAR WEAPONS HELD, AMOUNT OF CONDUCTED TESTS, STOCKPILES, AND STATUS OF NUCLEAR PRODUCTION/POSSESSION

NUCLEAR WEAPON STATES: USA, UK, FRANCE, RUSSIA, CHINA

NON-NPT STATES: INDIA, ISRAEL, PAKISTAN

STATES OF CONCERN: IRAN, NORTH KOREA, SYRIA

Arms Control Association ‘Assessing Progress on Nuclear Nonproliferation and disarmament’ (2016) Accessed: 9th December, 2016. Available at: https://www.armscontrol.org/files/2016_ReportCard_reduced.pdf

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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Is the USA truly committed to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty?

EAST WEST TREATY SIGNED

The extent to which the United States of America upholds their commitment to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty has often been subject to scrutiny. Though a considerable number of states has ratified the Non-Proliferation Treaty more than any other arms limitation and disarmament agreement, this fact alone does not provide enough evidence to display the extent of commitment by any particular party involved. As the headline suggests, the scope of this analysis will focus primarily on the extent to which the United States has remained compliant with the obligations regarding the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.

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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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Humantiarian issues surrounding Nuclear Weapons

 

“One nuclear weapon exploded in one city – be it New York or Moscow, Islamabad or Mumbai, Tokyo or Tel Aviv, Paris or Prague- could kill hundreds of thousands of people. And no matter where it happens, there is no end to what the consequences might be- for our global safety, our security, our society, our economy, to our ultimate survival.” – President Barack Obama

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Israel, Pakistan, and the threat of Nuclear proliferation.

The treaty on the Non-Proliferation of nuclear weapons (NPT) set out to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons and weapons technology as well as promote peaceful uses of nuclear energy. There are a handful of nations uninvolved in the treaty that have, or at least thought to have, developed nuclear weapons, these countries will be my focus, looking particularly at Israel and Pakistan and the controversy that surrounds their nuclear weapons programmes. The NPT came into force in 1970 with 190 parties having signed it, five of these were nuclear weapon states.

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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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