The puzzle of trusting relationships in the Nuclear Non.docx

8 Pages

Political Science
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Justin Bumgardner

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The puzzle of trusting relationshipsin the Nuclear NonProliferation Treaty JAN RUZICKA AND NICHOLAS J WHEELERTrust is therefore the primary object of our analysis This article fleshes out the trusting relationships encompassed in the NPT and shows how their continuation is essential to the future viability of the treaty We focus on the following three relationships in particular first the relationship between the five recognized nuclearweapon states NWS and the nonnuclearweapon states NNWS second the relationships among the NWS and third the relationship between the signatories to the NPT and those states that remain outside the treaty Each of the relationships revolves around a number of issues and questions such as nuclear proliferation civilian use of the nuclear fuelcycle nuclear disbarmentand the universality of the treaty The answer to the question whether trust or distrust prevails in each of the relationships will mean no less than the answer to the question of whether the NPT will survive as a meaningful international treatyby which we mean both as a treaty that prevents the proliferation of nuclear weapons and as a treaty that leads to nuclear disarmament Should distrust become dominant in these relationships we could face a world in which a growing number of states have nuclear weapons or at least the capability to acquire them within a very short period of time On the contrary maintaining and building trust in these relationships would allow for preventing proliferation and opening up the path towards nuclear disarmamentTrust in world politicsAnarchical realmthat is an environment where there is no overarching authoritythere is a lasting condition of pervasive uncertainty about the behaviour of others In this view the condition of uncertainty ensures that states fear each other and prepare for the worst This makes the possibility of establishing trusting relationships impossibleStates interact with each other in a variety of ways suggesting that interactions span the range from hostility to friendship At least in some parts of this spectrum we should be able to find trusting relationships If this is the case trust merits more careful attention from scholars of international politics rather than being dismissed as an impossible luxury it should on the contrary be studied as a social factor we define a trusting relationship as one into which actors enter knowing that as a consequence they increase their vulnerability to other actors whose behaviour they do not control with potentially negative consequences for themselves In doing so they make a judgement about how to relate to the other party in which there is a strong expectation that they will not face the negative consequences of the decision to trustThere are two main approaches to the study of trust The first one can be called rationalist This approach stresses the importance of interests in the establishment of trust In a relationship of two individuals trust takes the form of what the political philosopher Russell Hardin calls an encapsulated interest Thus in his words I trust you because I think it is in your interest to take my interests in the relevant matter seriously In his understanding of
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