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Nuclear Weapons: A source of mass destruction

Difference between India and American nuclear Weapons

Nuclear Weapon Arsenal of any nation is its deepest asset. These Assets come with a humongous responsibility; every nation empowered with nuclear warfare technology is bound to ensure their safety, security and prohibition of use. The world had witnessed and suffered a great deal due to the use of one such weapon of Mass Destruction way back in 1945 (World War II) by America on two Japanese Cities namely Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Approximately 200k people lost lives, consequences of that Blast can be felt today even after about 175 years.

Thankfully those bombings were first and last such use of Nuclear power. After World War II the world became highly unstable, each nation was in a goat race to attain supremacy and Nuclear Warfare Technology became the ultimate badge of status and unmatched power. Soviet Union, United Kingdom, France and China too gained Nuclear weapon powered status in a short time.

  • Non-Proliferation Treaty

After continuous stockpiling of nuclear weapons by only a handful of nations United Nations took a major step towards stopping it. Frank Aiken Irish Minister of External Affairs initiated the Non-Proliferation Treaty in 1958. Every member nation was asked to sign this treaty under the flagship of raising world peace.

In this treaty following were the point made:-

  1. States not in possession of nuclear weapons will not acquire them.
  2. States in possession of nuclear weapons will pursue disarmament.
  3. All states can use nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.

Under this treaty, Nations that have manufactured and have successfully tested Nuclear weapons prior to 1 January 1967 will be entitled as the Nuclear Weapon States. Nuclear weapon states were bound not to transfer assist or encourage any state towards the acquisition of Nuclear weapons to any NNWS.

India refused to sign this treaty as it was interpreted to be an intrusive monopoly towards Indian Sovereignty. The United State of America, who has assumed the title of Global guardian by itself is the biggest rogue to the Non-Proliferation Treaty as neither had it carried Disarmament nor it followed the instruction of not assisting NNWS in acquiring Nuclear Weapons.  

  • Indian acquisition of Nuclear Weapon Power

“As long as the world is constituted as it is, every country will have to devise and use the latest devices for its protection. I have no doubt India will develop her scientific researches and I hope Indian scientists will use the atomic force for constructive purposes. But if India is threatened, she will inevitably try to defend herself by all means at her disposal” stated Jawaharlal Nehru on 26 June 1946

India acquired Nuclear Weapon State Status in 1998, during Atal Bihari Vajpeyi’s government and had to pay a hefty price as America and Japan imposed sanctions on India after the successful testing of Nuclear weapon in Pokhran, Rajasthan. India has signed neither NPT(Non-Proliferation Treaty) nor CTBT but has opted “No first use policy”.

  • Differences between Indian and American Nuclear weapon

American and Indian Nuclear Weapons have vast differences both in terms of Technology as well as Application:-

  • India has never announced the total number of nuclear Warheads but it is estimated to be a number somewhere around 150. Whereas American total is 5800 of which 1750 are deployed in various strategic positions including in oceans.
  • A sizable number of Indian Nuclear Weapon Arsenal is made up of Nuclear Fission warheads which are considered less dangerous than Nuclear fusion warheads. Though the actual Fission warheads percentage is not well known, it is estimated to be around roughly 20%. The number shoots down to a perfect 0% if American Arsenal is taken into account.
  • Indian Nuclear Weapons are attached to ballistic missile systems, hence less deadly and controllable whereas American Nuclear weapons are attached to various Cruise Missiles which offer more controllability and incurring more damage to Target.
  • American Nuclear weapons are rumored to have a range that any part of the World can be targeted. India is yet to attain such a range for its Nuclear-Capable missile systems.

Author’s Take

Nuclear Weapons should be treated as a Responsibility towards humanity and each country should engage in Disarmament. Only one global organization preferably United Nations should possess nuclear weapons and it should work in a free and fair manner, it will result not only in a peaceful world but also end the monopoly of a handful number of Countries.

 By Shubham Yadav

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