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International Security and Weapons of Mass Destruction

Lecture - under construction!

Ben Kienzle

on 20 March 2015

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Transcript of International Security and Weapons of Mass Destruction

Types according to range:
Short-range ballistic missiles (< 1000 km)
Medium-range ballistic missiles (1000-3500 km)
Intermediate-range ballistic missiles (3500-5500 km)
Intercontinental ballistic missiles (> 5500 km) (landbased or submarine-based)
Military Means
WMD Proliferation I:

"The most frightening scenario is one in which terrorist groups acquire weapons of mass destruction."
European Security Strategy, 2006

"[T]here is no greater threat to the American people
than weapons of mass destruction, particularly the danger posed by the pursuit of nuclear weapons by
violent extremists and their proliferation to additional states."
U.S. National Security Strategy, 2010
WMD Proliferation II:

Final Debate
International Security and
Weapons of Mass Destruction
Dr Ben Kienzle
Centre for Science and Security Studies, Department of War Studies, King's College London
Weapons of
Mass Destruction
WMD and
International Security
Biological Weapons
Nuclear Weapons
Chemical Weapons
Vertical Proliferation
Horizontal Proliferation
"Optimist View"
"Pessimist View"
Origins in 1940s
Intention: to distinguish "WMD" and conventional weapons
Today: conceptual problems
Danger: instrumentalization
Alternative: NBCR
Potentially, very destructive
Problem of weaponization
Rarely used in warfare
Suspected stockpiles small
BTWC outlaws biological weapons
Challenge: bioengineering; dual-use research
Destructive potential limited (so far)
Use: World War I; Iraq-Iran War
(Suspected) stockpiles declining
CWC outlaws chemical weapons
Challenge: dual-use research
Definition: Improvement or increase of national WMD arsenals
Since 1980s: Declining number of WMD
Since 1998: No nuclear tests (except DPRK)
Currently: renewal of ageing nuclear arsenals controversial
Definition: Spread of WMD to other countries or non-state actors
Main concern of most governments
In practice, horizontal proliferation has been very slow
Problem: "virtual" nuclear weapon states
"More is better" (Waltz)
Minority opinion
Theoretical basis: deterrence; neorealism
"More is worse" (Sagan)
Dominant view of WMD proliferation
Theoretical basis: organization theory

Alternative "pessimist views":
Realism: "relative gains"
Pacificism: WMD are immoral
Relativism: "atomic obsession" (Mueller, 2010)
Types of nnuclear
First and second image view

Main point: military organizations undermines premises of deterrence

Main fears:
Nuclear weapon accidents
Deterrence failure/accidental war
"Optimist View"
"Pessimist View"
WMD Terrorism
Deterrence Theory
Deterrence is different from:
"Deterrence is the art of producing in the mind of the enemy the fear to attack."

Dr. Strangelove, 1964
Different forms of deterrence:
direct versus extended deterrence

existential deterrence
Nuclear Deterrence
CB Deterrence
Nuclear weapon is ultimate deterrent

Capability & credibility

Rational actors are always deterred

Thus, war is unlikely
Deterrence with CB weapons:
capability problem
but possible according to some analysts

Deterrence against CB weapons:
credibility problem ("commitment trap")
historical evidence inconclusive
Possible Flaws
Stability-Instability Paradox

MAD ("mutually assured destruction")
NUTs ("nuclear utilization theory")

Misinterpretation of psychological factors
(cf. suicide bombers)
Nuclear accidents
"Near misses"
Interstate wars largely absent even between non-nuclear weapon states
No clear correlation between deterrence and historical evidence
Deterrence overshadows other factors
Cold War was "long peace" for superpowers
Abscence of wars between nuclear weapon states
Non-use of nuclear weapons since 1945
No accidental explosions of nuclear weapons
Organization Theory
"More will be worse" (Sagan)
Dominant view of WMD proliferation
Theoretical basis: psychology; organization theory; liberal theories

Alternative "pessimist views":
Realism: "relative gains"
Pacificism: WMD are immoral
Relativism: "atomic obsession" (Mueller)
Liberal Theories
Second and third image view

Main point: proliferation undermines international non-proliferation order, as:
violation of international treaties
lack of trust between states

Main fear: proliferation cascade
First image view

Main point: leaders of nuclear weapon states not rational actors

Main fears:
Irrational behaviour
Erratic use of nuclear weapons
Undeterrable opponents ("suicide bombers")
"Nuclear weapons assault life on the planet, they assault the planet itself, and in so doing they assault the process of the continuing development of the planet. In their nature, nuclear weapons are not only baneful but also completely fallacious. "
H.E. Msgr. Dominique Mamberti, Holy See, 2006
Organization Theory
Liberal Theories
Domino effect without non-proliferation regime:
United States (1945); Soviet Union (1949); China (1964); India (1974); Pakistan (1998)

But also lack of domino effect:
France (1960); Israel (1960s); North Korea (2006)

Stability of international non-proliferation regime for more than 40 years

Survival of regime after clear violations
(Iraq; South Africa in 1980s)
Evidence at state-level is weak
(abscence of lunatic leaders)

Main issue: non-state actors
(deterrence of suicide bombers?)
Infamous "near misses":
1983: Able Archer 83 incident
1995: Norwegian rocket incident

Infamous nuclear weapon accidents:
1961 Goldsboro B-52 crash
1961 K-19 near nuclear meltdown
1966 Palomares incident
1968 Thule Air Base B-52 crash
1970 Loss of K-8 nuclear submarine
Why states (don´t) build nuclear weapons?
Domestic actors
Technological capabilies
Economic considerations
"If we do not want Islamic states - or anyone else for that matter - to have a nuclear capability, it is not necessarily because we consider them especially likely to bring on their own destruction by using it. It is, rather, that we do not want to cede some substantial chunk of our own global power to them."
Noah Feldman, New York Times Magazine, 2006
Top Security Concern
"9/11" effect
Real possibility of WMD terrrorist attacks
"One percent doctrine" (Dick Cheney)
WMD is largely hypothetical

65 years without nuclear terrorism

CB terrorism very rare events

WMD terrorism difficult
Threat Reduction
Wide Variety
of Measures
Ticking clock?
Big cities
Symbolic places
Possible WMD terrorists:
millenarian groups (e.g. Aum Shinrikyo)
neo-Nazi/racist hate groups
Islamic Jihadi groups
Separatist/revolutionary terrorists probably not
"Terrorists want a lot of people watching and a lot of people listening, but not a lot of people dead."
Brian Jenkin, 1975
Biological and chemical weapons can be produced by terrorists, but difficult to weaponize

Three ways to obtain a nuclear weapon:
with support from nuclear weapon state
stealing "loose nukes"
build a IND (improvised nuclear device)

Main issue: HEU; plutonium
Build it yourself most likely scenario
Delivery by:
cargo containers (to a port)
truck (smuggled across border)
BM Defence
Ballistic Missiles
Missile Defence
Standard delivery vehicle for WMD
Definition: "A missile that is propelled upward with a rocket enginge in an initial boost phase, after which the engine stops and gravitiy controls the remaining trajectory as it arcs back to earth."
Cirincione, 2007
Positive Developments:
Argentina, Brazil, Egypt, South Africa, Libya
Threats mainly regional (Middle East, South Asia, Korea)
BMD Projects
Israeli bombing of Osirak (Iraq)
US bombing of chemical plant in Sudan
US-led invasion of Iraq
Israeli bombing of nuclear site in Syria

Conceptual origins:
Preventive wars as a problem in deterrence theory

Origins as a strategy:
Post-Cold War world
New threat perception ("rogue states" & WMD)

"Military efforts to combat proliferation, including the application of military power to protect forces and interests, intelligence collection, and analysis."
Nuclear Threat Initiative, 2010
Key issues:
(1) Controlling, (2) dismantling and (3) preventing WMD programmes or parts of them

Full-scale invasion of a "rogue state"
Military strikes against nuclear installations
Intelligence operations
Interdiction (2003 Proliferation Security Initiative)
Irresponsible regimes acquiring WMD
("duty to prevent")

Ineffectiveness of non-proliferation regime

Changing conception of "sovereignty"

Better to prevent than to suffer the consequences
Undermines deterrence

Undermines international law
(prevention vs. preemption)

Undermines security

High costs in terms of human lives

Negative secondary effects
(on foreign, economic & environmental policies)

Practical problems:
Intelligence failures
Who acts as judge/policeman?
System of radars and "anti-missile missiles"
1980s: "Star Wars" (SDI)
1990s: Revival
Rumsfeld Commission Report
Technological Advances
2000s: European expansion
Poland & Czech Rep.
2009: Reduction of scope of projects
2010: NATO missile defence?
Currently, 14 different US BM Defence systems

"Theater" Vs. "national" ballistic missile defence
Defence better than retaliation

Missile defence is defensive (no threats)

Enhances freedom of action

Ballistic missile programmes of "rogue states"
Systems are redundant
(deterrence is sufficient)

Systems technically unreliable

Alternative forms of WMD delivery exist

Arms race likely to overcome defences

Arms control agreements undermined

High costs (100 billion dollars so far)
Chemical &
Geneva Protocol
1972 BTWC
1993 CWC
Australia Group
1968 NPT
1959 Antarctic Treaty
1967 Treaty of Tlatelolco
1985 Treaty of Rarotonga
1995 Bangkok Treaty
1996 Pelindaba Treaty
2006 CANWFZ Treaty
Entered into force: 1928
State Parties: 133

Banned the USE of chemical and biological weapons

Many states have/had declared reservations
(Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention)

Entered into force: 1975
State Parties: 163

Prohibits development, production, transfer and stockpiling of biological weapons

Main issues:
Compliance verification
Dual-use dilemma
(Chemical Weapons Convention)

Entered into force: 1997
State Parties: 188

Prohibits the development, production, stockpiling, transfer and use of chemical weapons

Strong verification and enforcement mechanisms
(Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons)

Headquarters: The Hague
Conference of State Parties, Executive Council, Technical Secretariat

Responsible for:
verification and inspections,
including challenge inspections
Informal export-control forum of 41 members
(40 states plus the European Commission)

Established in 1985

Main concern:
Control of dual-use items related to chemical and biological weapons
Harmonizing national legislation
Sharing information
(Nuclear Suppliers Group)

Export-control cartel of 46 nuclear supplier states

Established in 1975

Coordinating national export controls of nuclear material
Preventing nuclear exports to uncooperative NNWS
(Fissile Material Cut-Off Treaty)

Idea: General ban on fissile material

Treaty still under discussion

Main issue: verification
(Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty)

Signed in 1996, ratified by 155 states
(but not in force, as not ratified by all Annex 2 states)

General ban on all nuclear test explosions

Plus: comprehensive verification system
(so far: Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organization)

Control of nuclear stockpiles
Effective verification
Non-proliferation benefits
(International Atomic Energy Agency)

Established: 1957
Headquarters: Vienna

Origin: "Atoms for Peace"
Nuclear safety and security
Science cooperation
Inspections ("safeguards")
(Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty)

Entry into force: 1970
State Parties: 189

Three pillars:
Peaceful use of nuclear energy

Since end of Cold War:
"pillar balance" in danger
(plus: Article X problem)
Peace Movements
Arms Control
Global Zero
Social movements opposing nuclear weapons

Usually part of larger anti-nuclear movement

Mainly located in Western countries

Reject nuclear weapons due to moral, religious, ideological or political reasons

Typical means: protests, education, advocacy

Examples: Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War, Greenpeace, etc.
2007 Wall Street op-ed by Shultz et al.

Largely elite-driven approach

Attempt to attract broad support:
Countdown to Zero

Influential mainly in US and UK
Prohibition of biological and chemical weapons

Article VI
(disarmament obligation)
Arms limitation/reduction treaties,
mainly between US and USSR/Russia

1972 SALT I
1972 ABM Treaty (US withdrawal)
1979 SALT II (not in force)
1991 START I (expired in 2009)
1992 START II (not in force)
2002 SORT (expires in 2012)
2010 New START (to be ratified)

Issues: accounting and verification
Starting Position
Deterrence increasingly obsolete

Danger of nuclear "domino effect"

Increasing likelihood of nuclear accidents

Nuclear terrorism as a new threat
Nuclear weapons cannot be disinvented

Road to abolition extremely long
(possibility of unforeseen circumstances)

Would great powers accept the conditions for global zero, e.g. intrusive inspections?

Who pays the bill?
First steps:
Reducing nuclear arsenals
Eliminating tactical nuclear weapons
Taking nuclear weapons off hair-trigger alert
Ratification of CTBT
Negotiation of FMCT
Multilateralisation of uranium enrichment

Key elements:
Comprehensive, global, non-discriminator verification mechanisms
Missile defence?
Source: Photo courtesy of National Nuclear Security Administration / Nevada Site Office. Website: http://www.nv.doe.gov/library/photos/photodetails.aspx?ID=747
This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/ or send a letter to Creative Commons, 444 Castro Street, Suite 900, Mountain View, California, 94041, USA.
Source: US Department of Defense Imagery
Nagasaki, 9 August 1945
Source: Own elaboration based on the Nuclear Notebook in the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists
Source: Own elaboration based on the Nuclear Notebook in the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists
Source: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
Stanley Kubrick's Dr. Strangelove or:
How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb
Source: IAEA
Source: US Department of Defense
Source: ISTC
Source: IAEA
Source: United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs
Gun-type vs. Implosion-type
Fission vs. Fusion
Splitting atoms vs. fusing atoms
(release of huge amount of energy)
Fusion weapons more sophisticated than fission weapons
Key elements of nuclear fuel cycle:
Source: BBC Special Reports, "The Nuclear Fuel Cycle", http://news.bbc.co.uk
Source: BBC Special Reports, "The Nuclear Fuel Cycle", http://news.bbc.co.uk
Mining (Somaïr Mine, Niger)
Uranium Enrichment (USA)
Source: US Department of Energy
Source: Areva, http://www.areva.com
Source: Areva, http://www.areva.com
Source: US Department of Defense Imagery
Source: John C. Watkins V, http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/356762/Maginot-Line
Source: BBC, http://www.bbc.co.uk/newsbeat/19329991
Source: Doomsday Clock, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists
Conflict reduction

Cooperative Threat Reduction
Nuclear Security

Contingency planning
Police, intelligence, military measures
Source: U.S. Navy, http://www.navy.mil
Source: Center for Security Studies, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich, http://www.css.ethz.ch/
Source: Mike Dockery, Wikimedia Commons
Source: U.S. Air Force, http://www.af.mil
Multilateral Treaties
Nuclear weapon free zones spread all over globe

Typical characteristics:
Prohibit nuclear explosive devices
Prohibit assistance regarding nuclear weapons
Prohibit stationing of nuclear weapons
Prohibit testing of nuclear weapons
Nuclear energy cooperation
Strict IAEA control
Clear demarcation of limits
Indefinite duration
Negative security assurances by NWS
Expression of -
"nuclear taboo"
"tradition of non-use"?
Resolution of regional conflicts involving nuclear powers
(Kashmir, Middle East, Tawain, etc.)

Prevention of major conventional wars

Solving conventional military imbalances

Rule obedience and trust among sovereign states
"Nations don't distrust each other because they're armed;
they are armed because they distrust each other."

Salvador de Madariaga
Full transcript