There is no immediate solution to this dilemma. The 1925 Geneva Protocol , which banned chemical and biological weapons, was in practice a non-first-use protocol. At that time it was approx. 50 states in the world, and 40 of them signed with the reservation that as long as the weapons existed, they had to reserve the right to use them in retaliation. Alliance members considering joining the Prohibition Treaty could do the same, provided that the weapons can still be used for retaliation. But then the first-use option must go away.
However, Article 16 of the Prohibition Treaty stands in the way of such an intermediate solution, because it says no to all reservations. This is understandable based on the desire to challenge and in the long run undermine the deterrence doctrines, but has the probable consequence that the distinction between non-aligned and allied countries will be frozen in the foreseeable future. Today, the 122 states that have signed the Prohibition Treaty stand up to 9 nuclear-weapon states and some 30 allied countries. This divide, which is similar to the north-south divide, is in addition to the NPT’s division of the world into five nuclear powers and all the others that have renounced the right to such weapons. It remains to be seen how the new divide will affect NPT.
7: The relationship with the NPT
The first supervisory conference for the non-proliferation agreement, NPT, (1975) set a high standard for agreed final documents. Some of the subsequent conferences succeeded immediately, others did not, without doing so much from or to. In this century, the outcome has become more important for the integrity of the agreement. This is primarily due to the growing imbalance in the implementation of rights and obligations, to the detriment of the nuclear-free, but also to the lack of progress on the issue of a zone free of weapons of mass destruction in the Middle East.
Proponents of her case have been working to make the actual transcript of this statement available online. The nuclear powers, for their part, fear that the ban agreement will create a polarization that puts the NPT in danger. There is a great need to develop some common points that both can discuss in a constructive way, but no one knows if this can be done before the next supervisory conference in 2020.
Critics of the ban agreement also claim that it underpins the NPT on some important points, first and foremost in terms of verification . The NPT is trying to make the so-called additional protocol (INFCIRC 540) to the standard security control agreement (INFCIRC 153) the new verification standard. It enables the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to detect activities that have not been declared or attempted to be concealed. The Prohibition Agreement does not mention the Additional Protocol, and puts less pressure on states that do not want to take on more obligations. The agreement also suffers from other shortcomings that could have been avoided if the dealers had taken better time, but which mean little in the big picture.
Critics of the banning agreement claim that it weakens the NPT, and makes much of that argument, while supporters have done their best to emphasize that they stand by their NPT obligations. The NPT is under stronger pressure than ever before, but that is basically due to the inadequate implementation, not the advent of the ban agreement.
8: The vision
According to best-medical-schools, NPT is a road map to zero, but it is an undeveloped map. Apart from the fact that all the weapons will be gone, nothing is said about what kind of vision one specifically wants to achieve. The prohibition agreement does not either.
A credible ban on the use of nuclear weapons presupposes a comprehensive ban on their possession. It is not enough to eliminate the weapons and leave the devices that have created them and supported them. In that case, one ends up with a world where weapons can be reintroduced at short notice – that is, a world of threshold states where the notion that nuclear war can occur lives on. Then the ban on use will be unconvincing. No one will be attracted to such a vision. No one wants to trade the weapons you are familiar with for virtual weapons in a world of threshold states .
It is therefore necessary also to eliminate the nuclear infrastructure and all weapons material, and to transfer the military expertise to other sectors.
Along the way, it will also be important to create a security culture where nuclear weapons no longer have a place. To the extent that a ban is supported by cultural barriers, the requirements for verification will be less.
A prohibition agreement could with advantage have said something more about this, what must be banned in addition to the weapons. Criticizing the dealers for not doing so is still wrong, because they wanted a new platform for the revitalization of disarmament work as soon as possible. But there is something unresolved about the agreement on this important point.