Nuclear weapons in the Asia-Pacific
A critical security appraisal
in Critical Security in the Asia-Pacific
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This chapter examines the issue of nuclear weapons with a view to understanding the origins and consequences of nuclear policies, as opposed to simply describing these or calculating their strategic effects. It explores three key factors associated with use of nuclear weapons: ethical and humanitarian concerns; the implications of nuclear deterrence and nuclear use on citizen, state relations; and the implications of nuclear war for environmental and development projects. The chapter proposes the state of nuclear issues in the Asia-Pacific, focusing on the nuclear crisis in North Korea, proliferation in India and Pakistan, and the status of nuclear weapons in the US, China and Russia. Traditional security policies that have established nuclear weapons as a means of achieving security among states have led to a fundamental nuclear insecurity, that is, the constant fear that such weapons might actually be used, exposing human populations to unprecedented destruction.

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