Don’t Expect Rulers of Nuclear-Armed Nations to Accept Nuclear Disarmament―Unless They’re Pushed to Do So
From the chief architect of the first nuclear weapons regarding the Trinity test in July 1945:
The US is an existential threat to Russia, but the converse is not true. Russia’s position has always been defensive rather than offensive. Historically, it has been the US who threatens Russia (in at least two occasions the US seriously considered destroying Russia with a massive unprovoked first strike, they didn’t do it because faulty intelligence overestimated the risk of a Russian response.) Unlike the US, where nukes are a great industry, there is no market incentive in Russia to increase the nuclear arsenal.
That said, Putin shouldn’t be talking about hypersonic missiles, He should be doing what he can to implement an effective response as quietly as possible.
Eliminating all nuclear weapons should be a no-brainer for anyone seeking political office, but instead it is political suicide to do so. Not because nuclear disarmament is unpopular with the 99%, but because it is so popular with the 1%. Yet so many people still believe that we live in a functioning democracy, despite our inability to elect politicians who represent our shared values.
No country is going to trust any other country to disarm. A nuke is the ultimate you won’t attack me weapon. And getting them to all agree will never happen.
Look at Iran, they are hoping that the rest of the world will keep the US from attacking them. And the US keeps threatening to do just that. And if Iran decides that we will attack in spite of the world disagreeing, they will build a bomb. They will have to for their own protection.
If nuclear powers can be convinced they are hurtling towards Armageddon they might just stop. This is not simply a re-run of the Cold War: the Cold War was the peace. The world has experienced periods of peace (or relative peace) throughout history. The Thirty Years Peace between the two Peloponnesian Wars, Pax Romana, Europe in the 19th century after the Congress of Vienna, to name a few. They all ended: followed by war. The Congress System finally collapsed in 1914 with the start of World War One. That conflict was followed by the League of Nations. It did not stop World War Two. That was followed by the United Nations and other post-war institutions. History show nations/civilizations pursue power (manifested as interest) at all cost, eventually getting the very war they seek to avoid. But leaders and decision-makers delude themselves, thinking they can avoid that fateful conflict, that it can be limited in scale or even won. The pattern of history shows they are wrong. https://www.ghostsofhistory…
Unless they can be convinced. But the terrifying reality of how close we are to nuclear holocaust must be faced by everyone. Paradoxically, if there is any chance of stopping it its inevitability must be accepted.