“A world without nuclear weapons would be less stable and more dangerous for all of us.”

–Margaret Thatcher

“It would be our policy to use

nuclear weapons wherever we felt it

necessary to protect our forces and achieve our objectives.”

–Robert McNamara, former

US Secretary of Defence.

“I realise the tragic significance of the atomic bomb... It is an awful responsibility which has come to us... We thank God that it has come to us, instead of to our

enemies; and we pray that He may guide us to use it in His ways and for His purposes.”

–Harry S. Truman

It has been more than seven decades since the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings, but its significance remains as strong as ever. Today, nine countries (Russia, US, France, China, UK, Pakistan, India, Israel, North Korea) possess nuclear weapons, and five countries (Belgium, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Turkey) host foreign nuclear weapons. While some nations have stated their reason for the possession of nukes to be purely deterrent, others have surrounded their projects with purposeful ambiguity; but the fact remains that more than 15000 nuclear weapons are in existence today.

Despite protests from NGOs and other independent groups, the global nuclear stockpile continues to grow as the national interest of states takes precedence over humanitarian concerns. Is the world more stable, or more volatile?