Friday, June 22, 2012

Distorted Prestige in the Nuclear World

Its stamina in global politics is uncanny.  It has sustained decades of assassination attempts through treaties and agreements- phasing in and out of the spotlight- discontentedly subdued for short periods, but relentlessly surfacing back as a domineering danger to stability even amid repeated policies of averting an international order based on its threats and counter threats. Nuclear weapons are an invulnerable emblem of prestige.  Consequently, they attract various states.  However, not all states have built their regimes on nuclear power.  Latin America, for instance, has consolidated to almost completion its non-proliferation agenda through the 1967 (and its amended parts) Tlatelolco Treaty- a quintessential legal example of the spirit and integrity of global denuclearization efforts, and although other regions should follow Latin America in directing more efforts toward the end of nuclear proliferation, this has yet to be taken seriously.


Again, I believe it all goes back to this notion of prestige.  Ideally, every state wants its sovereignty to be respected by other states.  Even more so, states want power: the power to influence and guide.  Therefore, states are in constant competition for influence.  Although there exist examples of co-existence and balance in our global society, there also exist many examples of power struggles, demonstrated through war and strife.  One of the reasons for the longevity of nuclear build-up and the struggle for its conclusion is because state leaders have convinced themselves that nuclear weapons have a positive correlation to global power.  They look at leaders such as America or Russia, see its strong influence and find a salient commonality that is nuclear weapons.  Sure, the nuclear capabilities of these two countries has lent to its status as world powers but after really thinking about this, is this really the kind of world we all want to be citizens of-a society where our leaders characterize prestige exclusively with power (essentially based on countries threatening the rest into submission), rather than wisdom, respect amongst nations, positive esteem, and intelligent market decisions? If nuclear weapons continue to be used by state heads against others as leverage to ensure/secure sovereignty and authority then humanity really is flirting the line of its own demise.  

1 comment:

  1. Endorse and support the movement for a peace tax fund!


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