Image credit: flickr/International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons
Why Countries Build Nuclear Weapons in the 21st Century -- Zachary Keck, The Diplomat
Throughout the nuclear era, the conventional wisdom has been that one state’s nuclear acquisition has driven its adversaries to follow suit. As former Secretary of State George Shultz so eloquently put it, “proliferation begets proliferation.”
Although some of the earliest nuclear proliferation cases followed this pattern, it has been increasingly rare as the taboo against the first use of nuclear weapons has become more entrenched. Instead, the primary security factor driving nuclear weapons proliferation today is the disparity in conventional military power. This is likely to continue in the future, with profound consequences for which states do and don’t seek nuclear weapons.
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My Comment: I concur with this analysis that Asia is where nuclear proliferation is most at risk.