Global Security: Weapons of Mass Destruction

Topics: Nuclear weapon, Nuclear proliferation, Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty Pages: 8 (2713 words) Published: May 12, 2013
Since the Cold War, introducing nuclear weapons into the global system was one of the biggest changes that created a global phenomenon even after the year 1945 to the contemporary global politics. It has shaped the crucial aspects of the strategic actions of the states and transformed the international system. After experiencing two catastrophic global conflagrations, the global system has not triggered major wars and intra-regional wars over the post-Cold War period. However, utilising nuclear weapons to prevent world war should be treated with great attention as there are prospects of nuclear proliferation globally. The traditional definition of security is being freedom from danger and risk. However, in this context of the global politics, it perceives ‘security’ as something that makes protection and creates sense of safeness. Thus throughout this essay, it will discuss the meaning of security in the means of how it was created through the influence of nuclear/ weapons of mass destruction (WMD). Firstly, it will analyse the changing attitudes of strategic studies post-Cold War in the developments of nuclear technology proliferation. Moreover, it will critically discuss the influences of the nuclear weapons towards the security model in relations to why states still seek to develop weapon of mass destruction (WMD) in the contemporary global politics.

Understanding the terror and recognising of the destruction capabilities of nuclear weapon in the contemporary era can be a challenge to the people of today as the last nuclear weapon detonated in 1945. Subsequently, it is important to observe the historical context of WMD development and study the intention of the WMD. 1940 was the year of the birth of the first nuclear arsenal named as ‘Ivy Mike’. American physicists and their leader Edward teller developed nuclear armaments that was first detonated in 1945, (Balogun, 2011 p.160) which was defined as; extreme scale immediate mass destruction.

The strategic studies of the international relation have drastically changed in the past 20 years. Steve Smith’s The increasing insecurity of Security Studies: Conceptualising Security in the Last Twenty Years (1999) examines some aspect of security study literature in the last two decades. Smith addresses his main analyses of the changed perspective of the core subject initially concentrated on state and military to human social security. His view of what it is called the security studies in the contemporary system, moves away from the concentrating on the aspect of the military, WMD as the dominant issue but argues that the crucial issue is human security. On the other hand, Andrew O’Neil (2009) approaches the study in different perspective as he argues that WMD continues to act as the central role in international relations and in security studies as still in the contemporary system numerous states continues to value nuclear weapons as the supreme strategic possession for their security.

Synder (2000 p.174) has given the two variables for explaining the dynamics of nuclear proliferations. The operative growth of nuclear arsenals among the superpowers can be identified as ‘vertical proliferation’. Furthermore, significant potential for the spread can be recognised in other technologically capable states to develop nuclear technology and this is recognised as ‘horizontal proliferation’. Increase in producing nuclear technology and actions of testing have developed public’s eye catching concern, which is in relations to both military and environmental crisis. In generating nuclear power into the state it builds the sense of both security for the state conversely insecurity for human and the environment.

Acknowledging the power of state after possessing nuclear weapons will definitely achieve security against external threat, nevertheless it is crucial to consider the aspect of economic effect on the state. In obtaining nuclearization, the state must have the...
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