Is NATO’s Nuclear Deterrence Policy a Relic of the Cold War?

Is NATO’s Nuclear Deterrence Policy a Relic of the
Policy Outlook
Summary
As NATO grapples with the future of its deterrence posture, it faces the contentious question of whether reducing or withdrawing forward-based U.S. nuclear weapons in Europe would unacceptably reduce the security of its member states.
Related Media and Tools
 

The Cold War left a nuclear landscape whose remnants must still be sensitively managed. As NATO grapples with the future of its deterrence posture, it faces the contentious question of whether reducing or withdrawing forward-based U.S. nuclear weapons in Europe would unacceptably reduce the security of its member states. The weapons were intended to promote nuclear burden sharing through an Alliance-wide decision process. But the European aircraft that would drop them are aging and will need replacement or refitting. Decisions are needed soon on whether this should occur.

The United States favors still greater nuclear restraint, as it declared in its recent Nuclear Posture Review. But it is reluctant to change in Europe without the agreement of all its allies. Some member states, especially on NATO’s periphery, seek the continued assurance that they believe these theater weapons offer. Other allies see the decision as an urgent opportunity to advance the goal of the abolition of nuclear weapons. So the upcoming debate in Lisbon will require a rare combination of determination, political sophistication, and analytical clarity—and issues will likely still require resolution long after the summit.

Although significant differences between member states exist, most agree NATO should:

  • Remain capable of launching a nuclear response to aggression or blackmail as long as nuclear weapons exist.
     
  • Reassure the most exposed members about the Alliance’s capacity and commitment to defend them.
     
  • Avoid a high-profile transatlantic difference of opinion, which would represent the fastest and most farreaching loss of collective credibility.
     
  • Contribute to the reduction and, when possible, the elimination of nuclear weapons in the world.

To foster lasting consensus on the future shape and basing of nuclear deterrence, NATO’s leadership must pay close attention to the internal political pressures within key member states, as well as others’ perceptions of external insecurity. Both result from long-term geographical, historical, and cultural factors. A good decision on nuclear arrangements will safeguard both the Alliance’s credibility and its cohesion—and enable NATO to focus on new and emerging threats without distraction.

End of document
 
Source http://carnegieeurope.eu/2010/11/17/is-nato-s-nuclear-deterrence-policy-relic-of-cold-war/btxc

In Fact

 

81%

of Brazilian protesters

learned about a massive rally via Facebook or Twitter.

32

million cases pending

in India’s judicial system.

1 in 3

Syrians

now needs urgent assistance.

370

political parties

contested India’s last national elections.

70%

of Egypt's labor force

works in the private sector.

58

years ago

Carnegie began an internship program. Notable alumni include Samantha Power.

70%

of oil consumed in the United States

is for the transportation sector.

20%

of Chechnya’s pre-1994 population

has fled to different parts of the world.

58%

of oil consumed in China

was from foreign sources in 2012.

50%

of Syria’s population

is expected to be displaced by the end of 2013.

20

million people killed

in Cold War conflicts.

18%

of the U.S. economy

is consumed by healthcare.

$536

billion in goods and services

traded between the United States and China in 2012.

$100

billion in foreign investment and oil revenue

have been lost by Iran because of its nuclear program.

4700%

increase in China’s GDP per capita

between 1972 and today.

$11

billion have been spent

to complete the Bushehr nuclear reactor in Iran.

2%

of Iran’s electricity needs

is all the Bushehr nuclear reactor provides.

82

new airports

are set to be built in China by 2015.

78

journalists

were imprisoned in Turkey as of August 2012 according to the OSCE.

67%

of the world's population

will reside in cities by 2050.

16

million Russian citizens

are considered “ethnic Muslims.”

Stay in the Know

Enter your email address to receive the latest Carnegie analysis in your inbox!

Personal Information
 
 
Carnegie Europe
 
Carnegie Europe Rue du Congrès, 15 1000 Brussels, Belgium Phone: +32 2 735 56 50 Fax: +32 2736 6222
Please note...

You are leaving the Carnegie–Tsinghua Center for Global Policy's website and entering another Carnegie global site.

请注意...

您离开卡内基 - 清华全球政策中心网站,进入另一个卡内基全球网站。