The reason behind the creation of NPT were concerns for the safety of a world in which many nuclear weapon states. Countries recognized that having greater number Nuclear countries would reduce security for all, multiplying the risks of miscalculation, accidents, unauthorized use of weapons, or from escalation in tensions, nuclear conflict. Moreover, the use of nuclear weapons by the United States of America in 1945, has made apparent that the development of nuclear capabilities by States could enable them to divert technology and materials for weapons purposes. Thus, the problem of preventing such diversions became a central issue in discussions on peaceful uses of nuclear energy.
With this in mind, the principle of nuclear non-proliferation was addressed in negotiations as early as 1957 and by 1968 final agreement had been reached on a Treaty that would prevent the proliferation of nuclear weapons, enable cooperation for the peaceful use of nuclear energy, and further the goal of achieving nuclear disarmament.The NPT consists of three pillars:Non-ProliferationNuclear-weapon states pledge to not transfer nuclear weapons or in any way assist, encourage or induce any non-nuclear-weapon state in the manufacture or acquisition of a nuclear weapon. Non-nuclear-weapon states pledge to not acquire or exercise control over nuclear weapons and not to seek or receive assistance in the manufacture of such devices. Non nuclear-weapon states pledge to accept IAEA safeguards to verify that their nuclear activities serve only peaceful purposes.
DisarmamentAll Parties undertake to pursue good-faith negotiations on effective measures relating to cessation of the nuclear arms race, to nuclear disarmament, and to general and complete disarmament. The right to peacefully use nuclear technologyAll Parties are to develop nuclear energy for peaceful purposes and to benefit from international cooperation in this area, in conformity with their nonproliferation obligations. While it was brought into existence with good thoughts and a bright future mind, it does have its flaws.
. The NPT defines a Nuclear Weapon state to be any country that has built and tested this technology before 1st January 1967 and grants these countries the right to play host to an armada of nuclear weapons. While a clause calls for total disarmament, it does not specify by when. This essentially gives Nuclear weapon states the right to keep nuclear weapons in perpetuity, inadvertently, creating an imbalance of power in the world. This begs the question, Should the right to acquire and develop nuclear weapons be only reserved to Nuclear Weapon States.
My main reasons why the right to acquire and develop nuclear weapon should not be reserved to Nuclear Weapon States:1) It creates an imbalance of power between countries that have them and those that don’t.2) Saying that only states which created nuclear weapons before 1965 should be allowed to keep them is completely arbitrary. It could just as well have been 1975 or 19903) It could possibly be argued that only stable governments should possess nuclear weapons to prevent them from falling into the hands of terrorists, but who are we to decide which country is stable?Starting with the first point, imbalance of power. It allows countries to influence foreign policies that may not be in its best interest. To start with an example, the reason diplomacy has to this point had zero impact on China’s aggression in South China Sea is that the balance of power in the region is steadily shifting in favor of China.
They have no incentive to stop their assertion of sovereignty, or negotiate seriously over territorial disputes, as long as they believe they can get their way, over time, by coercion. Coercion achieved through its sheer military might that have given it the edge in the region. Such is the power nuclear weapons grant a country, it allows them to go rogue without having to suffer any consequence. Another example could be China’s encroachment in to India in 1962, triggering a minor war between the two countries. A step that China took due to its nuclear arsenalMoving on to my second point, it is completely arbitrary to allow countries before 1965. There is no reason as to why countries that possess nuclear weapons before 1965 should be given extra privileges.
Why can not the same right be extended to India which started developing its own nuclear weapons a decade since 1965. What makes India different than the U.S. or China or any of the Nuclear Weapon States.
A trust argument could be made saying that many countries feel safer with the five nuclear weapon states possessing weapons of mass destruction, and hence signed the treaty. How can and should these countries blindly trust Nuclear weapon states with such great power, when one of the nuclear weapon states (U.S.) single handedly killed around 200,000 people and a another is drunk on the power it gives. Can they be trusted with the sole right to acquire and develop nuclear weapons.
I say not.Moreover,Countries are recognized as having the right to defend themselves, and this right also extends to the possession of Nuclear Weapons. Often countries lack the capacity to defend themselves with conventional weapons. This is particularly true for poor and/or small countries.For example, a country such as Britain can never match its military might with that of China which has over 2,285,000 military personnel. With a nuclear deterrent, all states become equal in terms of ability to do harm to one another.
If a big country attempts to intimidate, or even invade a smaller neighbour, it will be unable to effectively scare it, since the small state will have the power to destroy vital parts of the invader’s country with a few properly utilised nuclear missiles. For example, the Russian invasion of Georgia in 2008 would have never happened had Georgia had Nuclear Weapons as Russia would have second thoughts when considering the potential loss of it would have to face in exchange for a small piece of Georgian territory. Clearly, nuclear weapons level the playing field for all regardless of it geography or military prowess…However, it could be argued that imbalance of power is important is maintaining peace and stability. Their argument could be that there should definitely not be a balance of power between the United States of America and countries such as North Korea and Iran. If there was then countries such as the U.S.
would be competing militarily with nations that are destructive in nature such as Iran’s threat to existence of Israel or North Korea’s against the United States and South Korea. Due to current state of affairs, Iran would think twice before they tried anything against Israel, as Israel and its allies could retaliate against Iran and cause just as much destruction as they had cause. Moreover, its not like any country can nuke another anytime they want to. Usage of these weapons have severe repercussions on a global platform and this is why countries such as North Korea are showing extreme reluctance to actually use these weapons.However, there are plenty of good reasons as to why the right to acquire and develop nuclear weapons should only be reserved to Nuclear Weapon States.The threat of nuclear weapons falling into the hands of rogue states and terrorists increases as more countries possess themThe threat of a state developing nuclear weapons could instigate pre-emptive strikes from its neighbours and rivals to prevent the acquisition of such weaponsStarting with my first argument, There are lots of dangerous autocratic leaders, many of whom yearn for nuclear weapons not just for defending himself/herself, but also for intimidating their neighbours.
Such leaders should not possess nuclear weapons. For example, Iran has pursued for years a secret nuclear weapons program that, were it recognized as legal, could be increased in scale and speed. The result of such an breakthrough could well destabilize the Middle East and would impose a severe threat to the existence of a number of states within the region, particularly countries such as Israel. Furthermore, the risk of nuclear weapons, falling into the hands of terrorists increases substantially when there are more nuclear weapons and larger numbers of countries possess them. Moreover, many countries in the developing world lack the capacity to safely secure weapons if they owned them due to reasons such as lack of technology, national instability, and government corruption. allowing these countries to hold nuclear weapons vastly increases the risk of their loss or misuse.