Us Nuclear Policy - the Obama Administration Essay

Submitted By JaredM22
Words: 928
Pages: 4

Jared Martin
Professor Mistry
Nov. 6th. 2012
The U.S. Nuclear Policy as of The Obama Administration In 2009 President Obama gave a speech at Prague, Czech Republic, proclaiming his goal to “seek the peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons”, exclaiming that the most dangerous legacy of the past Cold War era is the proliferation of nuclear weapons into the 21st century (White House Press Release). In his speech the president was adamant in refuting the traditional realist paradigm upon international affairs by proclaiming that if the world believes that the spread of nuclear weapons is inevitable, then by consequence the world is admitting to itself that the use of such weapons is also inevitable. Obama professed that the U.S. does not give into that mentality of “fatalism” and basis U.S. nuclear policy around three important strategic points: Taking “concrete” (or literal) action towards weapons reduction, strengthening the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty dramatically, and ensuring that terrorists never obtain a nuclear weapon while simultaneously employing constant vigilance in hindering global terrorist’s capacity for doing such, constantly. In order to implement the first stratagem in this goal, the Obama administration has sought a new arms reduction treaty with Russia entitled, “New START”, urged the U.S. ratification of the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (or CTBT) and has promoted a new treaty to the world which would institute to world members ending the production of fissile materials intended for use in state nuclear weapons. The policy proposals of the first stratagem are something that the president and his administration admits, “…will not be reached very quickly-perhaps not in [our] lifetime…[and] will take patience and persistence.” and notably New START has been agreed to, Congress has signed the CTBT, however, the administration’s proposed initiative regarding fissile material production has not taken a firm holding amongst the world community, and lastly, while Congress has signed the CTBT., it has yet to ratify it even up till the end now of Obama’s first term. (White House Press Release) Nuclear arms reduction and control is a very volatile matter politically considering the strategic imperative in national defense utilizing these weapons as well as the Cold War past which they ushered in. If the first stratagem of the Obama administration’s goal is to be taken seriously, “Making sustained progress…will require a concentrated effort by a long succession of U.S. administrations and Congress”, as forging a sustainable consensus in the U.S. pursuing a world without nuclear weapons is critical (Nuclear Posture Review Report) While the administration’s efforts in achieving this goal unilaterally have had mixed results so far, they are meaningless if the second stratagem outlined in Obama’s Prague speech is not met. This second stratagem calls for more resources and authority to be devoted to international inspections, a new framework for civil cooperation regarding nuclear energy, and harsher punishments enacted for those that break the rules of the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (or NPT). Of this stratagem, the Obama administration proposes a nuclear “international fuel bank” for “No approach will succeed if it is based on the denial of rights to nations that play by the rules” (White House Press Release). This notion is significant in that the NPT is based upon an agreement of potential negative effect while this proposal would provide a positive incentive to participate in the NPT, rather than be forced to by the world’s arbiting nuclear powers, and confer greater legitimacy in state actions towards peaceful