realism

Rethinking Nuclear Weapons

One of the most important and unremarked trends in nuclear weapons thinking is the constant change in the perceived capabilities and value of nuclear weapons. Hailed as miracle weapons in 1945, able to “assure success in negotiations,” prevent attacks, and guarantee great power status, the record of nuclear weapons has been one of continual disappointment.

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Open Ended Working Group

Geneva saw something new this week: actual constructive conversation about nuclear weapons. The United Nations established the Conference on Disarmament (CD) in its current form in 1978, expecting it to be the main forum for disarmament negotiations for a number of different types of weapons, including nuclear weapons. But the rules of the CD--limited membership, any one member can block action--have caused its work on nuclear weapons to stagnate for 20 years.

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