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The Failure of Deterrence With the signing of the Anti-Ballistic Missile treaty in 1972 the United States hoped to reduce the threat of nuclear war between itself and the Soviet Union This treaty was designed to prevent anti-ballistic missile systems from being developed with the hope of keeping the principle of deterrence intact The theory was that if these systems were not developed the Soviet Union and the United States would be wary of launching a nuclear attack in fear of a devastating second strike capability by the opposing nation The MAD principle or Mutual Assured Destruction was seen as the best way to curb ballistic missile attack capabilities by making them almost useless in the face of assured retaliation This treaty seemed the best way to deal with the bipolar nuclear community of the Cold War era but encouraged the two nations to develop huge arsenals consisting of thousands of ballistic missiles The proliferation of ballistic missiles and the chemical biological andor nuclear weapons they might carry should prompt the United States to reevaluate their position on nuclear protection We are no longer involved in a stalemate between two superpowers Ballistic missile systems have been acquired by many more nations and they are becoming increasingly available in the world market This availability suggests a radical rogue government or terrorist organization will or already possess ballistic missiles Currently more than 25 nations are working to acquire ballistic missiles not to mention the handful that has operational systems One of the nations to most recently acquire ABM capabilities was India who began performing nuclear testing within the last year Also a concern to American policymakers is the proliferation of nuclear weapons in China China has made and broken nuclear nonproliferation agreements for over a decade Speaking about a recent attempt to reach nuclear cooperation with the Peoples Republic of China United States Senator John Ashcroft said This is a political decision driven by
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