BRING THE BOMBS OUT OF THE BASEMENT: THE UNITED STATES, THE NPT,AND THE NUCLEAR NON-SIGNATORIES, 1961-1974

Eliza Matthews (2008). BRING THE BOMBS OUT OF THE BASEMENT: THE UNITED STATES, THE NPT,AND THE NUCLEAR NON-SIGNATORIES, 1961-1974 PhD Thesis, School of History, Philosophy, Religion & Classics, The University of Queensland.

       
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Author Eliza Matthews
Thesis Title BRING THE BOMBS OUT OF THE BASEMENT: THE UNITED STATES, THE NPT,AND THE NUCLEAR NON-SIGNATORIES, 1961-1974
School, Centre or Institute School of History, Philosophy, Religion & Classics
Institution The University of Queensland
Publication date 2008-12-18
Thesis type PhD Thesis
Supervisor Associate Professor Chris Dixon
Total pages 284
Total black and white pages 284
Subjects 21 History and Archaeology
Abstract/Summary ABSTRACT Since the dawn of the atomic age, the United States of America [US] saw the problem of nuclear proliferation as one of its own creation and therefore theirs to rectify. Perhaps motivated by a form of nuclear imperialism, the US held the majority of the aspiration and ability to solve the international problem of nuclear proliferation. In hindsight there is perhaps very little that successive presidential administrations could have done to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons during this period without significantly affecting their own international ambitions. However, the possibility that the US could have obtained the signatures of the nuclear non-signatories of India, Pakistan and Israel on the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (1968) [NPT] became more remote due to the determination of those states to act independently and demonstrate their authority over their own nuclear matters in the shadow of both the superpowers during the Cold War. Furthermore, the American failure to obtain early agreement on the nuclear issue meant that the long-term nuclear ambitions of these nations could not be reversed. Exploiting an array of archival sources, Bring the Bombs out of the Basement analyses the process by which the US sought to bring these non-compliant states into the nuclear non-proliferation regime. It also discusses the significance of the failure of the US to bring the nuclear non-signatories into the fold. Studying the problem under the framework of the NPT as the cornerstone of the nuclear non-proliferation system, it focuses on the period between 1961 and 1974 – from the intensification of NPT negotiations under President John F. Kennedy, to the year in which India detonated its first nuclear device. By analysing the diplomatic interactions between the US and India, Pakistan and Israel, this thesis examines why the US was unable to politically tame one of the most significant scientific research achievements of all time and wield influence in the nuclear arena commensurate to its superpower status. In terms of uniqueness, this is the first study to have comprehensively examined and compared US nuclear policy towards only the nuclear non-signatories.
Keyword United States - foreign relations
nuclear weapons
non-proliferation
India
Pakistan
Israel
South Asia
history

 
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