Thoughts on South African and international politics and culture

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

The end of mutually assured destruction (MAD)
Foreign Affairs carries a very well-written essay on the rising primacy of the USA as the holder of the world's largest nuclear arsenal. The Cold War dynamics of MAD, which kept a shaky peace, as no state wanted to commence the globe's destruction, are falling away as US nuclear stocks rise and those of Cold War foe Russia, and China, decline. The US, it states, are now able to destroy China and Russia (and any other foe's) nuclear stockpiles in a first strike.

This heralds an interesting new dynamic in global political influence, and a new responsibility for the US itself. The danger of this new dynamic is obviously inextricably linked to the foreign policy ambitions of the US, which is a difficult future to predict.

Read the full article here.