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Ban the bomb? | Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

Decades after several nuclear weapon states committed themselves to pursuing disarmament “in good faith” and “at an early date,” frustration over the pace of disarmament is growing more conspicuous. For example, calls are emerging to establish a treaty banning nuclear weapons, essentially making outlaws of nuclear-armed nations. Below, authors from Mexico, India, and Chile address this question: How would prospects for disarmament be affected if non-nuclear nations established a treaty that banned nuclear weapons outright—and how might such a ban be enforced?

Enforcing a ban, preventing treaty capture

by Héctor Guerra

In these early years of the 21st century, the international system seems increasingly unstable. Relations between Moscow and Washington exhibit renewed tensions. The Middle East seems to be developing into one big conflict zone. Some areas of the world, including my own region, Latin America and the Caribbean, are experiencing widespread violence outside the context of conventional armed conflict, partly due to transnational organized crime and the prevalence of small arms and light weapons. Meanwhile, global income inequality stands at very high levels. In a world such as this, it simply isn’t safe to maintain arsenals of nuclear weapons.

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