Skip to comments.
Is Nuclear Proliferation Unstoppable Now?
| Oct. 20, 2003
| Arnaud de Borchgrave
Posted on 10/28/2003 11:11:07 AM PST by katman
A pair of rabbits are put in a field and, if rabbits take a month to become mature and then produce a new pair every month after that, how many pairs will there be in twelve months time? Somewhere around 1200 A.D. an Italian mathematician who went by the pen-name Fibonacci pondered this very problem, a task made a bit easier by his pioneering adoption of the Hindu-Arabic numeric system. The 1,1,2,3,5,8... sequence which resulted is known as the Fibonacci Sequence, and it's connected to both the critical artistic concept of the "golden section" and the "propagating spiral."
Hmmm. Breeding like rabbits, Hindi-Arabic enablement, propagating spirals, game theory. These days, the concepts remind us of nukes, not numbers. Fundamentalist regimes in Iran and North Korea are entering the final phases of their race to atomic weapons, while reports surface of Pakistani exchanges with North Korea and now a weapons program in collusion with Saudi Arabia.
The truth stares us in the face, and will not go away: Fibonacci's sequence lives on today in the nightmare form of nuclear proliferation, and all current indications point to the conclusion that nothing of consequence will be done to halt the relentless addition of its sums.
Two excellent articles drive this point home: Henry Sokolski of the Nonproliferation Policy Education Center on the broken non-proliferation process, and UPI Editor in Chief Arnaud de Borchgrave's reports on recent nuclear agreements between Pakistan and Saudi Arabia.
Their conclusion are not optimisitic. Less than 3 years after the proclamation of The Bush Doctrine, we may be looking at its imminent failure.
read the rest...
TOPICS: Editorial; Foreign Affairs; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: abomb; armaud; atomic; bomb; borchgrave; bushdoctrine; fibonacci; gametheory; henry; iaea; iran; northkorea; nuclear; nuke; pakistan; parapundit; proliferation; saudi; saudiarabia; sokolski
posted on 10/28/2003 11:11:07 AM PST
When nuclear proliferation reached France, the game was over.
posted on 10/28/2003 11:12:30 AM PST
(Repeal the Law of the Excluded Middle)
Nuclear proliferation has been an inevitability since we signed the first pie crust treaty with Khrushchev. After all, we didn't actually think that anyone besides us would respect such treaties, did we?
posted on 10/28/2003 11:22:00 AM PST
(Un-PC even to "Conservatives!" - Right makes right)
Once the nuke was invented there was no way to stop proliferation. Once somebody knows it is possible to make a wheel they will be able to make a wheel. The best we could ever hope for was to convince everybody that already knew how to make a nuclear bomb to not tell anybody else thus slowing the process, a few careful assassinations here and there would help too, but there's no way it could be stopped forever.
posted on 10/28/2003 11:26:03 AM PST
(The Joan Wilder?!)
Fibinacci sequences are the basis for encrypting communications, (teletype, Internet, radio, etc..)!
Nuclear technology is 60 years old....no way to keep that genie in the bottle. In 50 years every country will have a bomb.
Once the nuke was invented there was no way to stop proliferation.
Umm, not quite - at least, there is a way to prevent the sort of ever-growing proliferation that this article talks about. We know it works, because for 40 years it did work.
That is through heavy-handed leverage in client states that are so dependent on the competing super-powers - and so well supported - that they don't need nuclear weapons. If Korea (more Stalinist than Maoist) had tried to develop nuclear weapons while they were dependent on the USSR, they would have put Moscow at risk (since a nuclear weapon going off on American soil would have been blamed on the other superpower and their clients), and so the Soviets would stop it.
Our 'problem' - and despite the problems I wouldn't have it any other way - is that we're too nice as a nation. Up until recently, no one feared us, not really, and other nations realize they'd need to be almost cartoonishly 'evil' to arouse us even now. The Bush Doctrine changes are not enough to overcome counter examples like Carter/Clinton, and in fact all the current Democrat candidates. The restraint on Korea was never fear of a regime-ending attack from us (and certainly never any sense of morality or 'need') but only the Soviet Union.
Does that mean I want the old 'evil empire' back? Of course not. But it did work to impede nuclear proliferation.
So what do we do? The first thing is to realize that nuclear weapons are not the only Weapons of Mass Destruction. There are other weapons bad enough that we just can't let them proliferate. And we must defend against them and their delivery systems. Actively and - if need be - aggressively. I don't care if the container that is smuggled into the country has a nuke or a ton of VX or smallpox. We need to recognize all are threats and not get so focused on one particular variety of WMD that we leave ourselves open to others.
Welcome to the New World.
posted on 10/28/2003 12:37:08 PM PST
Nuclear proliferation will take a nosedive the day a nuke is used against us.
But all it could do was slow it down, and even then only satelite states were effected, anybody managing to run independent (like China) still gets to make 'em. Then you get some new leader in charge of one of the super powers and he decides he digs proliferation and so it goes. Like I said it can't be stopped, it can only be slowed.
I think what we do is realize that all our thoughts on preventing proliferation were silly, wake up and smell the freaking coffee. You can't put the genie back in the bottle. Proliferation was inevitable and our counting on a few meaningless treaties to prevent it was short sighted and left us ill prepared for the world that was destined to come.
posted on 10/28/2003 12:42:19 PM PST
(The Joan Wilder?!)
To: Russian Sage
Nuclear proliferation will take a nosedive the day a nuke is used against us.
The United States needs to insure that the rest of the world understand that we still practice Mutual Assured Distruction. If a rinky-dink country can't assure us of our destruction, that's their problem. We can assure them of their destruction.
...counting on a few meaningless treaties...
I agree completely that treaties are not effective, except when they merely recognize a situation that is already in the best interests of the parties involved. But my point was that after a relatively rapid growth where 5 nations joined the nuclear club in about 10 years, only one admitted to nuclear weapons (and probably only two more had them) for the next 30 years.
Your statement is literally true that proliferation can't be stopped, only slowed, but it was slowed enough to make a huge difference in the number of nuclear powers.
The question is: What lesson can we learn from that, and how do we apply in when there isn't an evil empire to ride heard on those who feel no common interest with us?
Or, at another level, what incentive can we apply to keep others from attacking us? It's not the knowledge nor the technology that would launch an attack on us - or give the materials to someone who would - it's the leaders of the nations with the resources to develop the weapons. Nuclear non-proliferation words won't stop weapons any more than gun control laws deter criminals. But the threat of unacceptable consequences will.
posted on 10/28/2003 1:00:07 PM PST
"Or, at another level, what incentive can we apply to keep others from attacking us? It's not the knowledge nor the technology that would launch an attack on us - or give the materials to someone who would - it's the leaders of the nations with the resources to develop the weapons. Nuclear non-proliferation words won't stop weapons any more than gun control laws deter criminals. But the threat of unacceptable consequences will."
I don't think any country would be stupid enough to leave any way to trace any kind of WMD attack on the U.S. I think any enemy would prefer that it be done in a stealthy fashion with maximum plausible deniability. I believe it will happen someday in a way that can't be traced. Only then will there be the political will to seal the borders and have 100% inspections at all ports. The cost of doing that will be enormous both in direct costs and the effect on international commerce.
posted on 10/28/2003 3:31:54 PM PST
(Say a prayer for New York both for it's lefty statism and the probability the city will be hit again)
I don't think any country would be stupid enough to leave any way to trace any kind of WMD attack on the U.S.
Certainly they will try not to leave any, and that's the problem. Before, we made it clear we would hold the Soviets responsible for the actions of their client states, and they met that responsibility with typical ruthlessness.
Now? Now we don't have an obvious target. Perhaps it's time for ruthlessness. Like the line from 'Big Jake': "If something goes wrong - your fault, my fault, nobody's fault - the kid dies." Or, to all of Islam: "If we are hit by a WMD - your fault, Korea's fault, nobody's fault - Mecca is gone." I don't know if that's a good idea and I'm not really advocating that, except that we have to find some way to make it in their interest to get the terrorists under control.
posted on 10/28/2003 5:10:25 PM PST
Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual
posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its
management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the
exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson