November 17, 2009

Weakness Will Beget Proliferation

Justin Katz

Folks over thirty may find it a strange reemergence to hear talk of nuclear disarmament. In what way is it plausible to expect those who seek leverage against us to decrease their efforts to correspond with our own unilateral dismantling of our weapons of mass destruction? That's among the questions that Keith Payne takes up in a recent National Review article, which includes this interesting point:

... the presumption that U.S. movement toward nuclear disarmament will deliver nonproliferation success is a fantasy. On the contrary, the U.S. nuclear arsenal has itself been the single most important tool for nonproliferation in history, and dismantling it would be a huge setback. America's nuclear arms, in combination with treaty commitments that connect them to the security of our allies, are what permits many of those allies to remain non-nuclear. The United States offers this "extended deterrent" (or "nuclear umbrella") coverage to over 30 countries, and if that coverage did not exist, some of them would seek nuclear deterrents of their own.

As with much else, on the global scene, other nations' more palatable behavior (to liberals) is wholly dependent upon the United States' taking a more difficult stand. And as with much else, talk of disarmament seems dependent on a presupposition that the world would be better of with a weaker United States, whatever the means of weakening it. Hopefully, President Obama and his party won't have the opportunity to finish proving how calamitously wrong that presupposition is.