Nuclear weaponization has become a massive threat to the world. Many of the world’s powerful states have been stockpiling, strengthening and testing nuclear weapons on a large scale. Despite the catastrophic and fatal effects of nuclear stockpiles, the strongest nations are creating more and more nuclear arsenal.
In World War I and II the most nuclear arsenal was used. However, after the end of cold war, the US, Russia, the United Kingdom and France reduced their nuclear arms. Disarmament was their responsibility as they had deliberately signed the 1968 Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NTP) – an organization to reduce nuclear programme.
Turning towards the current scenario of the world, it categorically seems that the process of prohibition of nuclear armament has been delayed. Russia is increasingly modernizing its nuclear capabilities. She has tested 715 detonations since its inception. Currently, she possesses 1,950 strategic arsenal. As a result, the country is considered one of the most militarily powerful states in the world. Similarly, the US is also dealing with militarily powerful countries to improve its nuclear structure. It has tested ballistic missiles and the recently, the ‘mother of all bombs’ in Afghanistan. Washington generates 1,411 current strategic arsenal with a 4,480 stockpile. In retaliation, North Korea is currently skyrocketing in manufacturing maximum defence measures. Pyongyang has been rapidly producing missile programmes, she recently tested six intercontinental ballistic missiles to hit the mainland of United States. She produces 13-60 strategic weapons with a large range of missiles.
Pakistan has also lunched and tested cruise missile Babur-III on January 9, 2017. It augmented the credibility of Pakistan’s nuclear warheads. Pakistan claims that without nuclear power the country will be sanctioned like Iran and attacked like Iraq by the US in its recent Afghan foreign policy. Pakistan aspires to complete its credibility of nuclear warheads to counter the US and its major ally, India. Currently, Islamabad has 130 warheads in its current stockpile along with testing 6 detonations.
Pakistan launched and tested fired cruise missile Babur-III on January 9, 2017. It augmented the credibility of Pakistan’s nuclear warheads. Pakistan claims that without nuclear power the country will be sanctioned like Iran and attacked like Iraq
As far as India is concerned, it has been pursuing more nuclear weaponization since Sino-India and Indo-Pakistan nuclear wars. Recently, she has created strong relationships with the US and Israel in terms of developing defence warheads. As Israel is one of the strongest nuclear powers in the world, India is more inclined toward Israel and deals in billions of dollars for strengthening nuclear armament to counter the threats posed by China over the Doklam issue and Pakistan over Kashmir issue and border skirmishes. Currently, New Delhi possesses 110-120 peak stockpile with testing 6 detonations.
Despite the inauguration of NPT, developing and developed nations are not ratifying the treaty, because no nuclear states support banning nuclear warheads. In this way, non-nuclear countries are indicating fear that nuclear states are a symbol of a great threat for them. Such non-nuclear states are also improving their defence systems to counter those military threats posed by nuclear states. On the contrary, the sabre-rattling between the US and North Korea has recently rekindled the flame of nuclear weaponization. Overall, the conflicts in the world of Middle Eastern and South Asian countries are accelerating the nuclear race. Despite igniting a war on terror, the Trump administration must also realize that a 16-year long war in Afghanistan has only given mass destruction. Washington should initiate efforts to organize a platform where both, Taliban and the US, can negotiate a peaceful discussion to end the war. This is the only path, America has to follow to desist further mass destruction.
Those who are in the nuclear arms race claim that nuclear armament is a security guarantor, protector and national ambition. But that is a problematic way of disarmament. If we aspire to the disarmament of nuclear weapons, we could prevent the race without the cited claims and reasons.
It is clear as crystal that nuclear weaponization will not be curbed until world conflicts are countered properly through peace and harmony. It is also not hard to confess that there is a dire need of nuclear and NATO nations to not only sign but also ratify NPT for complete nuclear disarmament. The nuclear agreement between Iran and P5+1 – UN Security Council permanent members and Germany – is a positive way in this regard and should be implemented. The war can be won or lost, but it shall affect both sides and lead many countries into feminine, drought and mass destruction. Here, the key role of the UN peace keeping organization is need of the hour. The UN must play its role in maintaining peace by resolving old conflicts.
The writer is a freelance columnist, based in Shikarpur