Saturday, January 06, 2007

Noam Chomsky NUKE interview

Q&A:'Deal will dismantle anti-nuke treaties'

Noam Chomsky believes that the Indo-US nuclear deal essentially hurt all treaties geared to dismantle nuclear weapons. In an e-mail interview, he tells Prashanth G N that the threat to human survival is increasing:

Q: What happens to the Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT) in the wake of approval of the Indo-US July 18 agreement both in India and the US?

The agreement, if implemented, will be a serious blow to the NPT, and the network of treaties and international regimes in which it is embedded, some of which have already been dismantled by the Bush administration.

As discussed by Gary Milhollin, director of the Wisconsin Project on Nuclear Arms Control, the agreement would effectively rescind the principles on export of nuclear materials and missiles and undermine the instruments by which they are administered (the Nuclear Suppliers Group and Missile Techno-logy Control Regime).

Q: What are these principles?

The principles are 'country neutral'. If one country violates them, others can too, and very likely will. When the world's most powerful state openly consigns them to the rubbish heap, we can expect others to follow suit.

That began to happen once China moved to establish similar relations with India, and to a lesser degree, Pakistan. More may well follow, making the world a more dangerous place with each step.

Q: The NPT was always under pressure but seems more after the July 18 agreement...

The NPT was already in serious danger after the virtual collapse of the 2005 five-year review conference, and the Bush administration's stand that it is not bound by Article VI of the NPT, which requires the nuclear states to undertake 'good-faith' efforts to eliminate nuclear weapons, a legally binding obligation.

Recent votes at the UN disarmament committee (First Committee) reveal how the system is being further dismantled.

The US continues to vote alone against efforts to reserve space for peaceful uses, and is proceeding with militarisation of space, ultimately weaponisation, which will surely elicit retaliatory measures from potential targets, increasing the threat to survival.

Q: How will the world nuclear order get affected?

Any tear in the fragile fabric of arms control agreements invites further dismantling of them. If India receives authorisation from the world-dominant power to go nuclear on its own, that can only encourage others to do the same, increasing the threat to human survival which is at stake.

Q: Will the West now recognise India as a nuclear power?

Washington's decision to take this new step towards dismantling the international arms-control regime was quite openly motivated by commercial interests. The US military industry generally sees India as a huge potential market, and the same is true of the nuclear industry and others.
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posted by u2r2h at 3:44 PM


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