The nuclear weapons under the guise of the

The global nuclear non-proliferation regime, usually
takes the shape of a Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT), shapes state
behavior and encourages states to engage in cooperative action and agreement by
sharing information and providing third-party monitoring. Institutions such as
the IAEA provides the monitoring function, while the UNSC serves as an
enforcement mechanism to ensure compliance among states. The info-sharing
feature of the non-proliferation regimes aims at reducing the information
problem which was created by state’s incentive to conceal its true nuclear
capabilities (mainly for strategic and national security purposes), through neutral
third-party monitoring. The IAEA, for example, creates a safeguard system and
an inspection apparatus (Karns and Mingst, p11-12) that inspects their nuclear
facilities so that they cannot develop nuclear weapons under the guise of the civilian nuclear energy industry.  Knowing the significant commitment problem and
uncertainty of intent when it comes to reducing a state’s military nuclear
capabilities, NPTs are designed to have implementation agencies that provide
credible information and impartial monitoring function so that neither party
feels vulnerable to disclose information nor is encouraged to defect, knowing
that its status of compliance will be made known to the other party and the
international community (e.g. the UN Security Council) which could subsequently
impose sanctions. Furthermore, the fact that the info-sharing function can
remain mostly independent owing to the
collective principal-agent delegatory relationship also adds to this function’s
ability to encourage cooperation. In the case of 2002 Iraqi WMD
inspection, although member-states on the UNSC that
delegated the inspection authority to the UNMOVIC may have different special
interest, no member-state can unilaterally control change the contract delegated
to the monitoring agent ex-post (Tierney
2008). Having a neutral, independent inspector gave the weapon inspection legitimacy
which in turn assures the parties in the institution that their cooperative
effort will not be exploited by other states and that they will not be vulnerable
after cooperation (a common fear that’s often preventative for states to engage
in cooperation). In such a way, the info-sharing and monitoring function
of the non-proliferation regime help to shape state behavior into cooperation.

However, the effectiveness of info sharing as the
institution’s primary function to ensure state compliance remains under
question, as the NPT’ info sharing function only applies to states that entered
the treaty and the provisions of the NPT require some consensus to be ratified
and taken in effect. This means that states with certain geopolitical and
national interest may be incentivized to be uncooperative (e.g. not joining at
all) if not to be active in blocking the progress of nuclear non-proliferation
regime even though they recognize the benefit of cooperation and neutral
third-party inspection. In fact, four of the nine nuclear powers are not
covered under the NPT’s scope of inspection as they are not parties to the NPT
(Pakistan, India, and Israel never
signed, and North Korea withdrew).1
Additionally, the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban (CTBT) and the Fissile Material
Cutoff Treaty (FMCT) could not enter into force due to uncooperative efforts
from powerful, nuclear states such as the U.S., China, and India.2 Facing
the sovereignty of states, the NPT and IAEA can only encourage cooperation
through info sharing and the monitoring function among states that already
agreed to join the institution. States that are engaged in longstanding rivalry
or hostility may see their nuclear capabilities as the core to their national
defense and bargaining power, thereby taking no interest in entering an institution that will reduce their defense
capability for non-proliferation purposes in the first place.

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