The accelerating spread of nuclear weapons, nuclear know-how and nuclear material has brought us to a nuclear tipping point. We face a very real possibility that the deadliest weapons ever invented could fall into dangerous hands.
The steps we are taking now to address these threats are not adequate to the danger. With nuclear weapons more widely available, deterrence is decreasingly effective and increasingly hazardous.
One year ago, in an essay in this paper, we called for a global effort to reduce reliance on nuclear weapons, to prevent their spread into potentially dangerous hands, and ultimately to end them as a threat to the world. The interest, momentum and growing political space that has been created to address these issues over the past year has been extraordinary, with strong positive responses from people all over the world. [complete article]
Editor’s Comment — Strengthening the NPT requires that nuclear states who refuse to sign the treaty must as a consequence face penalties. The outlaw states are India, Pakistan, North Korea, and Israel. For as long as the United States — with a nod and a wink — allows Israel to maintain the pretense that it is not a nuclear-armed state, it will be impossible to credibly apply pressure on the others. If the United States wants to show the world that it is really serious about disarmament, Israel must be forced out of its nuclear closet.