Home > Disarmament > On the 50th Anniversary of the Non-Proliferation Treaty: An Exercise in Bad Faith | Nuclear Age Peace Foundation

On the 50th Anniversary of the Non-Proliferation Treaty: An Exercise in Bad Faith | Nuclear Age Peace Foundation

by Alice Slater member of the Coordinating Committee of World Beyond War.

On July 1, the 1968 Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) turned 50 years old. In that agreement, five nuclear weapons states— the US, Russia, UK, France, and China—promised, a half a century ago, to make “good faith efforts” to give up their nuclear weapons, while non-nuclear weapons states promised not to acquire them. Every country in the world agreed to join the treaty except for India, Pakistan, and Israel which then went on to develop their own nuclear arsenals. To sweeten the pot, the NPT’s Faustian bargain promised the non-nuclear weapons states an “inalienable right” to so-called “peaceful” nuclear power. Every nuclear power reactor is a potential bomb factory since its operation produces radioactive waste which can be enriched into bomb-grade fuel for nuclear bombs. North Korea developed its promised “peaceful” nuclear technology and then walked out of the treaty and made nuclear bombs. And it was feared that Iran was on its way to enriching their “peaceful” nuclear waste to make nuclear weapons as well, which is why Obama negotiated the “Iran deal” which provided more stringent inspections of Iran’s enrichment activity, now under assault by the US with the election of Donald Trump.

Despite the passage of 50 years since the NPT states promised “good faith” efforts to disarm, and the required Review and Extension conference 25 years ago, which since then has instituted substantive review conferences every five years as a condition for having extended the NPT indefinitely rather than letting it lapse in 1995, there are still about 15,000 nuclear weapons on our planet. All but some 1,000 of them are in the US and Russia which keep nearly 2,000 weapons on hair-trigger alert, poised and ready to fire on each other’s cities in a matter of minutes.

Source: On the 50th Anniversary of the Non-Proliferation Treaty: An Exercise in Bad Faith – Nuclear Age Peace Foundation

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